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Special Report: Prospects for Democracy in the Northern Triangle (ISSN 17414474)

Problem Number 2: Corruption

Corruption has been a perennial problem across Latin America, and acutely so in the Northern Triangle countries. Lobby group Transparency International (TI) publishes an annual Corruption Perceptions Index (CPI) which covers 180 countries and measures corruption on a 0-100 scale, where 0 is highly corrupt and 100 is very clean. The 2017 index (published in February 2018) found that more than two-thirds of the countries covered scored below 50 and that the global average was 43. El Salvador had a score of 33, meaning it is seen as significantly more corrupt than the global average. It was ranked 112th out of 180 countries. Honduras scored 29, ranking it 135th in the world, and Guatemala had the poorest performance, with a score of 28, ranking it as 143rd in the world. This meant that all three countries fell into the third quartile of the ranking, although Guatemala was very close to dropping into the fourth or bottom quartile.

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