|“Our latest survey indicates that corruption has become the third most important problem of Bulgaria society,” said Mr. Alexander Stoyanov, Director of the Sociological Agency “Vitosha Research,” which produced the Corruption Indexes of Coalition 2000. The latest corruption indexes of Coalition 2000 were announced at a press conference held at the Center for the Study of Democracy on October 27, 1999.
Corruption Indexes for September 1999
The good news from the survey is that the acceptability in principle of corruption has diminished and so has the susceptibility to corruption. In September the acceptability in principle index had a value of 1.1, which represents a reduction of the index by one point when compared with the previous survey conducted in April this year. According to Mr. Stoyanov, this is the biggest change registered since the start of corruption monitoring. In September the value of the susceptibility to corruption index was 2.9 and the already registered trend towards reduction of this index remained in force.
The bad news from the survey is the lack of change in personal involvement in corrupt practices, the persistently high level of spread of corruption and the respondents’ conviction that the government is among the three institutions in the country most affected by corruption.
In September the index of personal involvement in corrupt practices preserved its value, which indicates that the observed overall changes have affected people’s attitudes towards corruption but left unchanged their actions. The September survey also registered the highest value of the spread of corruption index. According to Mr. Stoyanov, this was not the result of any increase in the number of corrupt acts but an indicator for the stronger conviction of the public that corruption is widely spread.
An increase in the corruption index has been registered in most institutions with the highest values measured at the Customs - 9.10, tax authorities - 7.98, the judiciary - 7.88, the Privatization Agency - 7.86, and the police - 7.54. However, when asked to point out which the most corrupt institutions in the country are, the respondents ranked the government third. “This is a very worrying trend,” believes Mr. Stoyanov.
The practical effectiveness of corruption continues to be high. In September the value of the practical effectiveness of corruption index was 7.3. This represents an increase by more than half a point when compared to the previous survey conducted in April. Pessimism continues to dominate corruption expectations of Bulgarian public. The value of the corruption expectations index measured in September was the highest since the start of corruption monitoring. According to Mr. Stoyanov, this means that “the pessimism with regard to the possibility for society to overcome the social evil of corruption remains stable in time.”
The corruption indexes of Coalition 2000 accept values between 0 and 10. The closer the value of corruption indexes is to 10, the more negative the assessment of corruption situation in the country is.