From China to the United States, Europe to Africa, Southeast Asia to South America, corruption affects events and geopolitics around the world. Here, find reports from our cadre of global experts that take on this issue.
Navalny: The black hole of Russian politics
In just four years, Alexey Navalny has taken Russia's political scene by storm. From a complete unknown, he has risen to the first opposition figure who can be legitimately regarded as a possible alternative to Vladimir Putin. But beyond his flashy anti-corruption campaign, even close political observers have little idea what Mr. Navalny stands for. Many cannot shake the feeling that he enjoys a special tolerance from the authorities.
Ukraine in limbo
Well into the fourth year after Russia’s annexation of Crimea and the outbreak of hostilities in Donbas, Ukraine finds itself in a curious state of limbo. There is good news – the economy has bottomed out, the war in the east has frozen at low intensity, and the danger of yet another revolt in Kiev has receded. There is also bad news – rampant corruption is still strangling business, the Minsk peace process is going nowhere, and hopes for reintegrating the separatist-held areas have vanished into thin air.
From gas to governance: Mozambique’s slippery slope
Mozambique's dreams of gas riches moved closer to reality this month with the signing of an $8 billion LNG export project led by Italy’s Eni in cooperation with Exxon Mobil. The timing could not be better for a desperately poor country whose success story has gone sour amid a massive corruption scandal and aid cutoff. What happens next depends on whether Mozambique’s feuding parties manage not to blow this opportunity.
Opinion: Corruption scandals in Latin America can be good news
Large-scale bribery, graft and political corruption plague many countries in South America, but the region’s rising middle class and its renewed democratic institutions give reasons to expect that the problem will result in strengthening democratic institutions and the rule of law.
Angola: leadership change and the risks ahead
It is now certain that Angolan President Jose Eduardo dos Santos will not run in this year’s elections. The transition of power will offer the country a chance to begin to reform kleptocratic state institutions and address huge social and economic crises. The question is how much support dos Santos and his supporters will give the new regime.
Corruption in Latin America
Latin American countries have a long history of corruption, and the problem is as prevalent today as it ever was. Recent examples have shown that the rule of law and independent judiciaries can be a powerful bulwark against graft, but states in the region must do more.
Peru: PPK makes a strong start
Despite just barely eking out a victory in Peru’s June presidential elections, Pedro Pablo Kuczynski has made a fast start, gaining special powers to fight crime and corruption. The opposition has a significant majority in Congress, but PPK, as the president is known, is still likely to implement much of his center-right platform.
Mozambique looks for a way out of crises
Mozambique, once held up as a model country for the way it ushered in peace and reconciliation after a long civil war, now faces a new round of potential crises – from a huge corruption scandal, to fiscal instability, to a possible return of civil war. However, with new international investors in its natural resources and an incoming U.S. administration, momentum will likely be found to resolve these issues.
China sacrifices its North Korean pawn
One of China’s richest women was arrested after it came to light that her company was providing North Korea with materials that it could use to build nuclear weapons. She could never have done it alone. Plenty of government officials will be purged as the result of the scandal, but the smuggling will certainly continue.
China’s next big test: reforming state-owned firms
China’s state-owned enterprises dominate huge swaths of the economy, but their outlook is grim. Rapidly growing debts from politically driven loans, risky real estate deals and lower investment returns imperil their future and that of the entire Chinese economy. Many will be privatized, merged, or otherwise dissolved within the next few years. How this reform is managed will have a huge impact on China and possibly the world.