New Zealand voted least corrupt country in the world as Australia slips

New Zealand ranked first with Denmark.
New Zealand ranked first with Denmark. Photo credit: Getty.

New Zealand has come out on top in the new Transparency International Corruption Perceptions Index.

The index ranks 180 countries and territories out of 100 and ranks based on how corrupt a country’s public sector is perceived to be by experts and business executives.

New Zealand scored 87 points, tying with Denmark. Finland closely followed the lead coming in third place with a score of 86. 

The bottom countries are Somalia, South Sudan and Syria with scores of nine,12 and 13.

The Chair of Transparency International New Zealand (TINZ), Suzanne Snively says there is much to celebrate about our trustworthy public service high ranking.

"We know fraud and bribery exists in New Zealand, and we see instances of this happening in central and local government. But we also know that when it is found out, serious wrongdoing is investigated and prosecuted. That is one of our strengths.

Justice Minister Andrew Little was also pleased with New Zealand's result. 

"New Zealanders can be proud that our reputation as one of the least corrupt countries in the world has been restored," said Little.

He goes on to say "most recently we have banned foreign donations, sending a clear signal that foreign interference in our democracy is not welcome."