Poor governance, corruption makes India 'high risk'

Risk analysis study blames both Congress, BJP for inability to tackle corruption


Trithesh Nandan | February 20, 2012

India ranks in the category of ‘high risk’ countries where poor governance and systemic corruption are the main stay of the government, according to a new study released by the UK-based risk analysis firm Maplecroft. 

The study also blames India for not taking decisive timely action. “Continuing poor governance is evidenced by the endemic nature of corruption, especially in India and Russia, where the political process is undermined by an inability to tackle the problem,” said the report titled ‘Global Risk Atlas 2012’ released on Monday.

It said that India along with the other BRIC (Brazil, Russia and China) countries is still vulnerable to financial shocks despite making high growth in the last several years. “Improvements in basic social infrastructure, such as education, healthcare and sanitation for large sections of society, are vital in combating the impacts of global risks. Without these, and improvements in governance, the BRIC economies may not fully realise their investment potential,” said Alyson Warhurst, Maplecroft CEO.

The risk analysis firm has blamed both the major parties, the ruling Congress and the main opposition Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP), for the inability to tackle corruption. “In India, for instance the political standoff over a new anti-corruption law between the ruling Indian National Congress and the opposition BJP, both of which have been hit by recent corruption scandals, has severely disrupted law-making,” the study noted.

For the BRIC countries, the study found out that the governance and reform have not kept pace with economic growth. “Terrorism and political violence are also identified by Maplecroft as particularly prevalent risks in India and Russia,” the study held.

According to the report, “Although the government of Manmohan Singh has vowed to tackle corruption, the seriousness of its efforts has been brought into question by a series of corruption scandals which have surfaced over the past two years and put pressure to strengthen anti-corruption legislation.”

This is the fourth annual global risks atlas study which covered 178 countries across 33 global risk indices. There are 41 countries in the ‘high risk’ category in which India belongs. The key global risk areas which study considered: macroeconomics and emerging powers; terrorism and conflict; governance risk; resource security; climate change; pandemics; and societal and human rights risks.

The 10 countries most exposed and least resilient to global risks are: Somalia (1), DR Congo (2), South Sudan (3), Sudan (4), Afghanistan (5), Pakistan (6), Central African Republic (7), Iraq (8), Myanmar (9) and Yemen (10).

“Low exposure to security risks and infectious diseases is also supported by strong societal resilience and good standards of governance, enabling the country to withstand and adapt to global risks,” said the study.

Read the findings



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