• Germany's news in English
 

Corruption 'will cost Germany €250 billion'

Published: 16 Mar 2012 09:12 GMT+01:00

The estimate, based on a study by Friedrich Schneider, economics professor at the Johannes Kepler University in Linz, Austria, topped the professor's own estimate of seven years ago, when corruption reached a low-point of €220 billion.

Economists agree that bribery and favours among public officials and private businessmen are generally dependent on the economic situation – the worse the economy, the more open people in authority are to a brown envelope under the table.

But according to a report in Die Welt newspaper, the study concludes that there are other factors at play, including what Schneider calls "increasing bad habits."

The professor thinks there are only two effective ways to prevent corruption – stricter rules and more severe punishments, or better pay. He added that the two needn't be mutually exclusive.

The researcher's conclusions are based on data from the corruption index kept by Transparency International since 1995. Germany ranks 14 in the chart of least corrupt countries.

Economists believe corruption damages the economy because bribery often leads to the best and cheapest offer losing a deal, which leads to smaller investments for these investment projects. This ultimately damages growth.

The Local/bk

The Local (news@thelocal.de)

Your comments about this article

14:16 March 16, 2012 by wkeim
Germany has to improve the federal Freedom of information (FOI) law, adopt FOI laws in 5 local states (Bundesländer), ratify CoE and UN conventions against corruption and improve transparency of funding of political parties to catch up with Europe, America, OSCE, OECD and BRIC states (see weakness no. 2, 3, 4, 8, 34, 35 and 52 of National Integrity Report Transparency Germany http://home.broadpark.no/~wkeim/foi-ngo.htm ).

Walter Keim

Netizen
20:24 March 17, 2012 by The Man
It happens in every country, always has, always will. But the EU as a whole is perhaps the biggest example of corruption on a grand scale. The EU hierachy has made themselves a huge gravy-train of benefits, exemptions from tax, huge pensions and so on. Each time someone tries to sort out where the money is going and points out errors and complete lack of control of the budget, they are put under so much pressure and interference in their private lives they have to give up and nothing changes.

They of the EU hierachy are setting us an example of how to get away with poor accounting, control of money and barely-hidden corruption on a grand scale, so it is no wonder others take their lead from them....
01:19 March 18, 2012 by sfd69
Sounds like America-EVERY day ALL day...
14:33 March 18, 2012 by catjones
sfd69...care to back up your claim with facts?
22:11 March 18, 2012 by expatriarch
I think a 25% TAX FREE reward for discovered fraud for two years into the past and 3 years into the future would rut this problem in a matter of minutes. Literally, you would be able to count the minutes before the bodies would pile up. I could do with a chunk of the roughly € 312,000,000,000.00 that would make possible over the five years.

Combine that with the death penalty for white collar crime of something like a life-time cumulative € 5,000,000 or so would also do it. The death penalty is the only effective, sensible, and useful for white collar crime; besides eradicating heinous people. The deterrent effect, so often claimed by proponents of the death penalty only functions in cases of premeditated, rational, organized, collusive crimes; for which corruption as a subset of white collar crime is a very nice candidate.
07:58 March 19, 2012 by authun
Just like at Chicago, cat. Enough said.

What the he!! facts are you expecting sfd to come up with to answer such a stupid question?
10:19 March 19, 2012 by moistvelvet
Not surprisnig at all considerig corruption starts at the very lowest form, whether it be a Stadt worker driving his snowplough and gritter off route via his parents street, a mother volunteering to be involved in some offical capacity at a kindergarten and then receiving preferential treatment over child placement, or a someone's tax return being put to the top of the pile because it is a friend, they are all forms of corruption which to most people would seem harmless, but it is still corruption.
Today's headlines
Extreme heat causes Autobahn to rupture
A fissure on the Autobahn near Heidelberg. Photo: DPA

Extreme heat causes Autobahn to rupture

The heatwave sweeping across the country may have Germans flocking to the sea this weekend, but the extreme temperatures are also causing Autobahns to break apart. READ  

Nazi island resort to be turned into luxury flats
Photo: Wikimedia Commons

Nazi island resort to be turned into luxury flats

A vast Nazi mega-complex meant as holiday homes for German workers and later used by the Soviets as a Cold War barracks is about to be turned into luxury flats. READ  

Greece crisis
'Bundestag must vote on new bailout': Schäuble
A poster of German Finance Minister Wolfgang Schäuble in Athens reads "For five years he has sucked your blood. Now tell him NO." Photo: DPA

'Bundestag must vote on new bailout': Schäuble

UPDATE: Finance Minister Wolfgang Schäuble said on Friday that there would be no quick release of bailout funds to Greece after the country's referendum on whether to accept its creditors' terms on Sunday. READ  

Activists give Dalai Lama 80th birthday stamp
The new Deutsche Post stamp showing the Dalai Lama. Photo: DPA

Activists give Dalai Lama 80th birthday stamp

Pro-Tibet activists have created a new limited-edition stamp featuring the Dalai Lama to mark the Tibetan spiritual leader's 80th birthday. READ  

Women's World Cup
'Germany will crack England': top coach
Star striker Celia Sasic. Photo: DPA

'Germany will crack England': top coach

The manager of European champions FFC Frankfurt told The Local he expects Germany to beat England in the third place play-off in the Women's World Cup, and predicted his protege Celia Sasic will grab a goal or two. READ  

NSA surveillance scandal
Calls grow for govt to act on NSA spying
Chancellor Angela Merkel, the highest-profile German victim of NSA spying, speaking on the phone. Photo: DPA

Calls grow for govt to act on NSA spying

Green Party security expert Konstantin von Notz told The Local on Friday that Chancellor Angela Merkel is failing to restore faith in the German-US partnership following fresh spying revelations. READ  

Germany reach semis of beach volleyball worlds
Ilka Semmler and Katrin Holtwick. Photo: DPA file

Germany reach semis of beach volleyball worlds

Germany's top beach volleyball pair are storming the world championships in Holland and prepare to face Brazil in the semis on Friday. READ  

Environment minister blasts Merkel, colleagues
Environment Minister Barbara Hendricks. Photo: DPA

Environment minister blasts Merkel, colleagues

Environment Minister Barbara Hendricks loosed a broadside against her cabinet colleagues on Friday in a guest article for Die Welt, saying that they had decided to do too little to reduce carbon dioxide (CO2) emissions in a way that would cost too much. READ  

Greece crisis
BILD polls readers in own 'Greece referendum'
Image: BILD/screenshot

BILD polls readers in own 'Greece referendum'

Tabloid Bild continued its campaign against bailouts for Greece on Friday by calling its own "referendum", asking readers to fill out a poll on whether Germany should keep stumping up. German politicians were divided on how the Greek vote would affect Europe. READ  

Police confiscate WW2 tank hidden in cellar
The Panther tank removed from a cellar in Kiel, with a prosecutors' evidence label attached to its barrel. Photo: DPA

Police confiscate WW2 tank hidden in cellar

Police searched a villa in a wealthy suburb of Kiel on Wednesday and found a Second World War tank, a torpedo and other weaponry in the cellar. On Thursday they were still working on removing the tank. READ  

RECEIVE OUR NEWSLETTER AND ALERTS
Gallery
Police seize pensioner's WW2 heavy weapons haul
National
How to survive the Europe-wide heatwave
Sport
Is Schweini already out of the door at Bayern?
Politics
How German media shaped the Greece crisis
National
Car assembly robot crushes worker at Volkswagen
Rhineland
Weathermen red-faced over heatwave snow warning
Society
An eye for an eye? Mum protects child in playground with pepperspray
National
As it happened: Queen Elizabeth's final day in Germany
National
As it happened: Queen Elizabeth's second day in Germany
National
Queen Elizabeth II's first day in Germany - as it happened
National
Bus passengers tell fake racists where to get off
Politics
What's really in the Queen's handbag?
National
Germans say USA doesn't respect freedom
National
Yes, you CAN buy adult e-books before 10pm in Germany
VIDEO: Watch a 93-metre turbine crash to earth in slow motion
Gallery
Who's got a shot at the German Film Awards
Rhineland
Anger over 'child-free' beer garden
National
How do you do, Majestät?
National
Man defends right to pee in public with tear gas
Features
The Germans who won Waterloo for the British
Frankfurt
Should Germany ban circus animals?
Hamburg
Where people are having the most sex in Germany
Culture
Who Wants to be a Millionaire? Not this student...
National
Dresden's three-decade-long red light
Politics
Upper house calls for gay marriage now
Berlin
Berlin named 3rd-best city worldwide
Sport
In search of the toughest firefighter
Business & Money
German firms shine for European engineering students
Gallery
Hitler's paintings up for auction
National
German's 70-year search for murdered US pilot
Politics
What the G7 leaders agreed at Elmau
Business & Money
What really makes Germans happy
National
Playmobil builder leaves worldwide legacy
National
The car share that became a drug run
Politics
What Snowden revealed to Germany
Rhineland
Why wolf cubs are being raised by hand
National
Hitler's booze cave found
National
Environment makes Germany worth living in
Latest news from The Local in Austria

More news from Austria at thelocal.at

Latest news from The Local in Switzerland

More news from Switzerland at thelocal.ch

Latest news from The Local in Denmark

More news from Denmark at thelocal.dk

Latest news from The Local in Spain

More news from Spain at thelocal.es

Latest news from The Local in France

More news from France at thelocal.fr

Latest news from The Local in Italy

More news from Italy at thelocal.it

Latest news from The Local in Norway

More news from Norway at thelocal.no

Latest news from The Local in Sweden

More news from Sweden at thelocal.se

6,998
jobs available
Toytown Germany
Germany's English-speaking crowd