Corruption Low, Most Bribes Paid Toward Medical Services


A fresh survey reconfirms Estonia's low level of corruption. Of the 6 percent of respondents who did admit to paying a bribe in the last year, most said they did so in exchange for medical services.

It is the first time that Estonia has been included in Transparency International's Global Corruption Barometer, which provides an overview of 107 countries.

In the findings, revealed at a Tallinn press conference today, Estonia ranked immediately after the UK and a few countries ahead of the US by share of respondents who said they paid bribes.

Latvia and Lithuania were much higher, at 19 and 26 percent, while Finland was at 1 percent. The world average was 27 percent.

Despite healthy results for Estonia, there is some concern over the fact that only 39 percent of respondents believe the average citizen can contribute to the fight against corruption - the EU average is 61 percent. Also, the share of people who said they would inform authorities of instances of corruption was a little over half, still one-fifth lower than the EU average.

Estonians considered political parties the most corrupt of institutions, followed by businesses and public officials. The least corrupt, they said, are the military, churches and the education system.