Energy powerhouses, Russia and Venezuela, equally scored low in the Corruption Perception Index released the Transparency International on Thursday.
Countries caught up in the recent Arab Spring movement unsurprisingly also scored low on the list, with Libya in the bottom 15 of 183 countries surveyed.
With maritime piracy rife and on ongoing battle between a shaky government and Islamist forces, Somalia almost inevitably grabbed the bottom spot, joint by North Korea with a score of 1. A score of zero denotes ‘highly corrupt’ on Transparency International’s list.
The recently-split African oil giant of Sudan came in at number 177 alongside Turkmenistan, while energy stalwart Iraq faired just two places better off.
Venezuela scored 1.9 out of a possible 10 to grab the number 172 slot, the traditional oil giant of South America even beaten by Libya at number 168 with 2 points.
Russia and Nigeria, two huge oil and gas producers, each scored 2.4 to jointly snatch number 143, both 14 places shy of Syria which continues to be hit by political and social upheaval as well as international oil sanctions.
Another major hydrocarbons player, Iran, came in at number 120 with a score of 2.7, a long way behind Middle Eastern neighbour Qatar which flew the flag for the region with 7.2 points in the number 22 spot.
New Zealand came in top of the pile with a score of 9.5 followed by Denmark, Finland and Sweden while huge oil producer Norway grabbed number 6 with 9 points.
Canada, already a vast producer and with huge oil sands reserves, sits at number 1 with neighbour US at 24.
“This year we have seen corruption on protestors’ banners be they rich or poor,” commented Transparency International chairman, Huguette Labelle.
“Whether in a Europe hit by debt crisis or an Arab world starting a new political era, leaders must heed the demands for better government.
“Most Arab Spring countries rank in the lower half of the index, scoring below 4. Before the Arab Spring, a Transparency International report on the region warned that nepotism, bribery and patronage were so deeply engrained in daily life that even existing anti-corruption laws had little impact.
“Eurozone countries suffering debt crises, partly because of public authorities’ failure to tackle the bribery and tax evasion that are key drivers of debt crisis, are among the lowest-scoring EU countries.”