Russia and the U.S. equaled the level of corruption in business

EY released its annual study of the level of corruption in the business environment. Russia significantly improved its performance: over the past year, the number of respondents who gave bribes prevalent in the business fell by almost a third. According to the survey, while last year 48% of respondents reported that they consider corruption in the corporate sector widespread, but this year this opinion was expressed by only 34%. This is 5 percentage points below the global figure and on the same level with the US.

Director of the Institute of strategic analysis FBK Igor Nikolaev believes that such effect gave a loud anti-corruption investigations that were opened over the past year. But the situation expert still evaluates as “amazing”: “In times of economic crisis, as a rule, often prevails psychology “live like the last day” and corruption becomes more. And the fact that it was less that she suffer less, this is a surprising result”.

In the EY this year’s results associated with anti-corruption efforts of the authorities. “The Russian authorities continue to develop and improve legislation in the field of fight against corruption. In particular, extended the range of officials who are obliged to disclose their income, as well as disclose potential conflicts of interest,” said EY partner Dmitry Zhigulin.

In the survey this year only 8% of Russian companies reported that in their sector use bribes to obtain contracts. This figure is three times lower than last year Russian values in 24% and below global (11%). The Director of the Institute for industrial and market studies Andrei Yakovlev believes that the difference between the past and the current year can be explained not so much the actual level of corruption in a corporate environment as the research methodology. “EY quite a specific sample, they poll a small number of companies and it majors. Draw large conclusions based on a small number of responses. In this situation numbers can significantly vary depending on changes in the situation at 5-7 firms,” says Yakovlev.

Despite the positive developments that have occurred over the past year, 52% of respondents continue to consider the fight against corruption is not effective enough, despite authorities ‘ ongoing efforts.

At the same time representatives of Russian business has recognized that companies themselves need to improve ethical business principles. The results of the survey showed that currently 12% of respondents in Russia are ready to resort to unethical actions to overcome the crisis, and 26% can justify them if they are committed to achieve the intended financial results.

The survey was attended by employees of companies-retailers, enterprises from the sphere of industrial production, the oil and gas industry and energy sector. Only the study in Russia, which took place from October 2015 to January 2016, was attended by employees of financial and legal departments of the 50 largest Russian companies, the annual income of each of which close to $1 billion.

Almost 3 thousand respondents from 62 countries who participated in the survey, the highest level of corruption in the business environment observed in Brazil (90%), Ukraine (88%) and Thailand (86%), and lowest in Finland (0%), Saudi Arabia (4%) and Sweden (4%).