Sri Lanka has been placed among 14 countries that have the lowest accountability for arms imports, a study by Transparency International said here on Wednesday.
The study, a spin-off from the Government Defence Anti- Corruption Index 2013 (GI) which analyzed what 82 countries do to reduce corruption risks in the sector, places countries in corruption risk bands according to detailed assessments across seven areas in which parliaments play a vital anti-corruption role.
It also shows, through detailed case studies, how parliaments and legislatures can improve oversight of defense.
Fourteen countries were placed at the bottom of the banding, exhibiting critical risk of corruption due to lack of legislative defense oversight.
These countries are Algeria, Angola, Cameroon, Cote D’Ivoire, Democratic Republic of Congo, Egypt, Eritrea, Iran, Libya, Qatar, Sri Lanka, Saudi Arabia, Syria, and Yemen.
Only four nations — Australia, Germany, Norway, and the United Kingdom — were amongst the top performers, with very low levels of corruption risk, followed by twelve countries which are at low risk due to better performance by their parliaments.
Two-thirds of parliament and legislatures fail to exercise sufficient control over their Ministry of Defence and the armed forces, the study found.
Amongst those, 70 percent of the largest arms importers in 2012 leave the door open to corruption.
Transparency International estimates the global cost of corruption in the defense sector to be a minimum of 20 billion U.S. dollars per year, based on data from the World Bank and the Stockholm International Peace Research Institute (SIPRI).
Sept. 18 (Xinhua)