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Same Level of Corruption Recorded in Russian, U.S. Businesses – Survey

Thirty-four percent of respondents in Russia and the United States agree that bribery and corruption are widespread in their country, a survey by multinational financial services company EY reported.

The survey results show business professionals in both countries agreed that corruption in business was widespread in their respective nations.

EY — better known as Ernst & Young. — conducts annual investigations into economic corruption worldwide. The 14th annual survey was conducted from October 2015 to January 2016 by global market research agency Ipsos MORI. They held 2,825 interviews in a sample of the largest companies in 62 countries and territories.

In the survey's foreword, global leader of the fraud investigation David Stulb wrote: “There remains a worryingly high tolerance or misunderstanding of conduct that can be considered inappropriate.”

In last year's EY survey, 48 percent of Russian respondents said that corruption was a widespread issue in their industry.

“The Russian authorities are continuing to develop and perfect legislation in the fight against corruption,” business newspaper RBC reported Friday, citing Dmitry Zhigulin, a partner at EY.

Andrei Yakovlev of the Higher School of Economics said that the recorded improvement may not only come from a real decrease in the level of corruption but also the method in which the survey was carried out. “The sample size used by EY was not that big and they focused on larger companies. They have made some rather large claims based on a small number of responses,” he said, RBC reported.

A 2016 survey by multinational audit firm PricewaterhouseCoopers (PwC) reported that the economic crime rate in Russia fell by 20 percent as a result of anti-fraud measures. Thirty percent of respondents were affected by bribery and corruption, and 48 percent of respondents have experienced an economic crime in the last 48 months.

Forensic services leader Jeremy Outen wrote in the PwC foreword that while economic crimes remains a serious problem for business in Russia, a positive trend has been emerging.

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