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Russia Places 127th in World Transparency Rankings

MediabistroLittle progress has been made in Russia's battle against public sector corrpution.

Russia has placed 127th out of 177 countries in Transparency International's 2013 Corruption Perceptions Index, a ranking of public sector corruption as perceived by business people and country experts.

Just as the disappointing results were announced, President Vladimir Putin on Tuesday founded a new department in the presidential administration specifically devoted to fighting corruption, Vedomosti reported.

But according to Elena Panifilova, head of Transparency International's Russian branch, increasing government oversight alone won't solve the problem.

"It's necessary for not only the government to battle corruption," Panifilova said at a press conference Tuesday, Interfax reported.

The government needs to develop channels to involve civil society in the battle with bribery and to better protect individuals who expose corruption, she said, adding that the poor results in the ranking were expected and show that little progress has been made.

Although Russia rose six places from its 133rd ranking in last year's index, its score remained constant at 28 out of 100 possible points.The score put them in a nine-way tie with countries such as Pakistan, Azerbaijan and Gambia

New Zealand and Denmark were ranked the most transparent, with scores of 91, followed by Finland, Sweden, Norway, Singapore, Switzerland, the Netherlands, Australia and Canada.

Afghanistan, North Korea and Somalia were seen as having the most corrupt governments, each receiving a score of 8.

Sixty-nine percent of the countries included scored below 50, indicating a "serious corruption problem" worldwide, the index said.

Transparency International creates its ranking using a combination of surveys and assessments conducted by 13 separate institutions based on government and business climate data collected in the last two years.

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