Politics, Business & Culture in the Americas

The 2020 Capacity to Combat Corruption (CCC) Index

Ranking

Scores across the region

Country

Overall Ranking

6 7 4 4 Argentina 5.32 4.86 5.78 6.50
4 5 6 5 Brazil 5.52 5.64 4.66 6.49
2 3 2 2 Chile 6.57 6.08 7.45 7.09
3 2 3 3 Costa Rica 6.43 6.26 6.73 6.61
14 14 10 15 Bolivia 2.71 2.06 4.07 3.08
13 13 13 13 Dominican Republic 3.26 2.71 3.61 4.98
7 6 5 8 Colombia 5.18 5.10 5.18 5.53
9 10 11 12 Ecuador 4.19 4.11 3.84 5.15
11 9 14 11 Guatemala 4.04 4.13 3.10 5.28
8 8 8 6 Mexico 4.55 4.15 4.55 6.24
10 11 9 9 Panama 4.17 3.80 4.36 5.39
12 12 12 10 Paraguay 3.88 3.62 3.66 5.34
5 4 7 7 Peru 5.47 5.67 4.65 6.03
1 1 1 1 Uruguay 7.78 7.61 8.12 7.87
15 15 15 14 Venezuela 1.52 0.88 1.43 4.35

Scores across the region

Country

Argentina

6


OVERALL
RANKING
Overall Score

5.32

2020

5.33

2019
5.78
Democracy and Political Institutions
6.50
Civil Society, Media and the Private Sector
Argentina went through critical changes over the past year, with presidential elections bringing peronismo back to power and the country enduring another sovereign default. Its overall score in the CCC Index, however, remained stable. Argentina is ahead of countries like Brazil and Colombia in the Democracy and Political Institutions and in the Civil Society, Media and the Private Sector sub-categories. However, Argentina still faces a series of challenges related to Legal Capacity, ranking below Peru, Brazil and Colombia.

Brazil

4


OVERALL
RANKING
Overall Score

5.52

2020

6.14

2019
4.66
Democracy and Political Institutions
6.49
Civil Society, Media and the Private Sector
Brazil continues to demonstrate relatively solid anti-corruption credentials, ranking fourth in the 2020 CCC Index. However, it displays one of the most concerning trajectories in the region, with a 10% decline in its overall score, particularly due to setbacks in the Legal Capacity sub-category, which dropped 14% year-on-year. A perceived decline in the independence of law enforcement agencies, and recent judicial decisions that negatively impacted investigations of white-collar crime, are the leading causes for the downward trajectory.

Chile

2


OVERALL
RANKING
Overall Score

6.57

2020

6.66

2019
7.45
Democracy and Political Institutions
7.09
Civil Society, Media and the Private Sector
From mid-October 2019 until the COVID-19 pandemic, Chile faced an unprecedented wave of social unrest and its worst political crisis in three decades of democracy. Yet the 2020 CCC Index reveals that the storm has not significantly impacted Chile’s ability to fight corruption—at least for now. The country’s overall score, as well as its performance in all three sub-categories, remained remarkably stable. If it were not for the inclusion of Uruguay in this year’s edition, Chile would again be leading the ranking.

Costa Rica

3


OVERALL
RANKING
Overall Score

6.43

2020

N/A

2019
6.73
Democracy and Political Institutions
6.61
Civil Society, Media and the Private Sector
Ranking in third in the 2020 CCC Index, Costa Rica is in the same group as Uruguay and Chile, and stands out when compared to other Central American countries analyzed. In fact, Costa Rica is marginally above Chile in the Legal Capacity sub-category, which includes 7 of the 14 variables that comprise the CCC Index.

Bolivia

14


OVERALL
RANKING
Overall Score

2.71

2020

N/A

2019
4.07
Democracy and Political Institutions
3.08
Civil Society, Media and the Private Sector
Excluding Venezuela, Bolivia scored lowest in the CCC Index, with areas of concern across all three sub-categories. More importantly, the country is going through rapid changes since the eruption of protests and the ousting of President Evo Morales last year, making its trajectory in the anti-corruption space still very uncertain.

Dominican Republic

13


OVERALL
RANKING
Overall Score

3.26

2020

N/A

2019
3.61
Democracy and Political Institutions
4.98
Civil Society, Media and the Private Sector
The Dominican Republic ranks near the bottom of the CCC Index mainly due to its low score in the Legal Capacity sub-category. The country is behind the regional average in six of the seven Legal Capacity variables, particularly regarding the independence of anti-corruption agencies, the use of plea bargaining and collaboration instruments, and institutional strength of investigative bodies.

Colombia

7


OVERALL
RANKING
Overall Score

5.18

2020

5.36

2019
5.18
Democracy and Political Institutions
5.53
Civil Society, Media and the Private Sector
Colombia has faced a series of unprecedented challenges over the past year, including the continuing influx of Venezuelan refugees, widespread street protests and, more recently, the COVID-19 crisis. However, Colombia’s score in the CCC Index has remained relatively stable since 2019. Colombia had slight decreases in its scores for the Legal Capacity and the Democracy and Political Institutions sub-categories. But they were offset by marginal gains in the Civil Society, Media and the Private Sector sub-category.

Ecuador

9


OVERALL
RANKING
Overall Score

4.19

2020

N/A

2019
3.84
Democracy and Political Institutions
5.15
Civil Society, Media and the Private Sector
Despite significant progress in the fight against corruption under the Lenín Moreno administration, Ecuador’s overall score is still below the regional average. The Ecuadorian system performs particularly poorly in critical areas under the Legal Capacity sub-category, such as judicial independence and efficiency, and resources to fight white collar crime.

Guatemala

11


OVERALL
RANKING
Overall Score

4.04

2020

4.55

2019
3.10
Democracy and Political Institutions
5.28
Civil Society, Media and the Private Sector
Following the departure of the UN-backed International Commission Against Impunity in Guatemala (CICIG), Guatemala’s anti-corruption environment suffered a rapid deterioration over the past year. The country’s overall score in the CCC Index dropped by 11% since 2019. This setback was mostly driven by a 15% fall in the Legal Capacity sub-category.

Mexico

8


OVERALL
RANKING
Overall Score

4.55

2020

4.65

2019
4.55
Democracy and Political Institutions
6.24
Civil Society, Media and the Private Sector
President Andrés Manuel López Obrador came to power with a promise of “ending corruption”, and the topic has firmly remained at the top of his government’s agenda. However, the 2020 CCC Index shows that, in practice, not much has changed for Mexico—in fact, the country has stagnated and maintains a poor ability to detect, punish and prevent corruption. Mexico’s overall score, as well as the scores for all three sub-categories, remained notably similar to last year’s.

Panama

10


OVERALL
RANKING
Overall Score

4.17

2020

N/A

2019
4.36
Democracy and Political Institutions
5.39
Civil Society, Media and the Private Sector
The 2020 CCC Index highlights Panama’s uneven anti-corruption landscape. As a financial secrecy jurisdiction where major scandals took place over the past years, including the Panama Papers and the Odebrecht case, Panama’s score in the Legal Capacity sub-category is one point below the regional average. Panama also performs below regional averages in the Democracy and Political Institutions and in the Civil Society, Media and the Private Sector sub-category, although by a smaller margin.

Paraguay

12


OVERALL
RANKING
Overall Score

3.88

2020

N/A

2019
3.66
Democracy and Political Institutions
5.34
Civil Society, Media and the Private Sector
Paraguay is among the lower performing countries in the overall ranking and in all three sub-categories of the CCC Index, faring particularly poorly in the Legal Capacity sub-category. In this particular area, Paraguay is only ahead of Venezuela, Bolivia and the Dominican Republic.

Peru

5


OVERALL
RANKING
Overall Score

5.47

2020

5.17

2019
4.65
Democracy and Political Institutions
6.03
Civil Society, Media and the Private Sector
Peru is the most positive story in the 2020 CCC Index, with clear improvements in two sub-categories: Legal Capacity and Democracy and Political Institutions. The change reflects gains in law enforcement capacity and the court system, as well as the importance of anti-corruption in President Martín Vizcarra’s agenda.

Uruguay

1


OVERALL
RANKING
Overall Score

7.78

2020

N/A

2019
8.12
Democracy and Political Institutions
7.87
Civil Society, Media and the Private Sector
Uruguay leads the 2020 CCC Index in the overall ranking and in all three sub-categories—in some cases with a considerable edge over Chile, the second-best ranked country. The reasons for Uruguay’s success range from strong enforcement mechanisms across the public sector and well-established democratic institutions to an active civil society and a vigilant press. Also, the country’s size and higher level of development represent unique advantages compared to its Latin American peers.

Venezuela

15


OVERALL
RANKING
Overall Score

1.52

2020

1.71

2019
1.43
Democracy and Political Institutions
4.35
Civil Society, Media and the Private Sector
Venezuela remains the exception in the CCC Index for the second year, isolated at the bottom of the ranking and lagging far behind the rest of the region in most of the variables analyzed. More importantly, the situation continues to deteriorate: Without any real prospects of a democratic transition and amid the further erosion of government institutions, the Venezuelan overall score dropped by 11% since last year. The second-worst performing country in the 2020 CCC Index—Bolivia—has a score that is 1.2 points higher than Venezuela’s.