Thailand, despite its measures to identify where and when corruption is happening, can do better in perceptions-based listings
Citizen engagement is as important to countering corruption as systems, rules and regulations. Thai experts recommend stronger support for the Access to Information Law
Around the world, social media and mobile technology are making it easier for citizens to gather evidence of corrupt practices
Bangkok, February 23, 2012—Thailand, in spite of being a parliamentary democracy and a higher middle-income country, can do better in perceptions-based corruption listings. According to Transparency International’s 2011 Corruption Perception Index, Thailand was 78th out of 178 countries in the world.
Thailand has been good at putting in place systems that help identify symptoms of corruption and reduce the opportunities for corrupt practices. Public services processes like passport issuance, ID cards, and driver licenses, have been streamlined. Many of these processes are now online and are constantly being evaluated using a system of key performance indicators.
An example is the e-Revenue system which was implemented by Thai authorities to reduce interactions between taxpayers and tax collectors and the risk of any money changing hands in the process. Similarly, e-Auction systems were put in place to reduce collusion in public procurement.
An independent National Anti-Corruption Commission (NACC) has also been established to investigate corruption in the public sector. Public officials are now required to file assets and income declarations. However, despite these measures, Thai people are of the view that corrupt practices are still on-going.
As part of the World Bank’s support for good governance and anti-corruption, it co-organized, with the NACC, a conference to discuss practical approaches towards more evidence-based anti-corruption policies. It was held on January 11-12, 2012 in Bangkok and brought together international and Thai experts. They highlighted ways to curb corruption: