Editorial: Dodging the graft

November 9th, 2009

The Financial Times

With financial sector losses being counted in the trillions, it is easy to lose sight of the mere hundreds of billions slushing down the drain of corruption every year. So negotiators meeting in Doha to discuss the six-year-old United Nations Convention against Corruption must make sure the momentum gained by the anti-corruption fight over the past two decades does not become a casualty of the crisis.

There is no doubt that graft afflicts the developing world heavily: officials defraud developing nations of up to $40bn yearly, says Ngozi Okonjo-Iweala, World Bank managing director and a former Nigerian finance minister. Yet it is a dangerous illusion to see graft mainly as a poor country problem.

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