Rwanda has improved by one point to score 56 out of 100, making it one of the five least corrupt countries in Sub-Saharan Africa, according to a new Corruption Perception Index (CPI).
The 2018 Corruption Perception Index, a global index that measures the level of corruption across the world, was released Tuesday by Transparency International.
"Data suggest that an increase of 1 point of the CPI score allow to increase direct investment by 0.5 per cent of the GDP and around 4 per cent of average income per household," Johann Graf Lambsdorff, a former CPI Lead Researcher, said in a statement.
Rwanda was ranked the fourth least corrupt country in Africa behind Seychelles which scored 66, Botswana, which scored 61, and Cabo Verde, which scored 57. Namibia is completes the top five.
In East Africa, Rwanda was found to be the least corrupt country while, globally, the country was ranked the 48th.
"Scoring one point in Transparency International's global index is a huge achievement. Rwanda's improved score was based on aspects like free movement of people, ease of online application and of doing business," said Immacule Ingabire, the Chairperson of Transparency International Rwanda.
Although Rwanda is keeping its performance, be it on the regional, continental or global level, corruption is still there, and the most affected are those with very limited income who cannot afford its cost.
The areas which are more prone to corruption, Ingabire said, include banking especially during the process of loan applications, as well as implementation of mega infrastructure projects, among others.
"Fighting corruption requires concerted efforts and everyone should understand the dangers of corruption and its negative impact towards socio-economic development," she added.
Generally, more than two-thirds of countries score below 50 per cent, with an average score of only 43 per cent.
Denmark and New Zealand top the index globally with 88 and 87 points, respectively. Somalia, South Sudan and Syria are at the bottom of the index, with 10, 13 and 13 points, respectively.
The index ranks countries based on how corrupt public sector is perceived to be. It is measured based on a combination of 13 reliable surveys and assessments of corruption.
This year's index particularly reveals that continued failure of most countries to significantly control corruption is contributing to a crisis of democracy around the world.
"Corruption is much more likely to flourish where democratic foundations are weak and, as we have seen in many countries, undemocratic and populist politicians can use it to their advantage," Delia Ferreira Rubio, the Chair of Transparency International, said.