World Justice Project’s Rule of Law Index: New Zealand in Top 6, Australia in 8th Place

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A South Australian policeman offers a drink of water to a koala at the side of the road
A South Australian policeman offers a drink of water to a koala at the side of the road in Adelaide January 16, 2014. Reuters

New Zealand has placed sixth overall in the World Justice Project's Rule of Law Index. The global index measured 99 countries based on eight categories which include crime, government accountability, corruption, basic rights, security and access to justice and order.

Out of 99 countries surveyed, New Zealand came out sixth behind Denmark, Norway, Sweden, Finland and the Netherlands.  The World Jusice Project gathered data from 100,000 households with 2400 surveys  to measure how the rule of law affects the lives of people around the world.

In the open index category, New Zealand came second and outscored only by Norway. New Zealand ranked third in the lack of corruption category. In 2013, a research  study showed that only 3 per cent of New Zealanders had paid a bribe in the last year when transacting with public services. The figure is low compared to the global average of 27 per cent.  

New Zealand was named the least corrupt nation for 2013 and tied with Denmark for the distinction. Graft and corruption watchdog Transparency International released the results of the survey with Afghanistan, North Korea and Somalia named the most corrupt countries.

New Zealand had the highest score in the Corruption Perception Index which means it is less tainted by corruption than other countries in the world. The island nation was joined at the top by Denmark with the same score. Both countries have increased their scores from 90 in 2012 to 91 out of 100 in 2013.

Transparency International chair Huguette Labelle said the top performing countries like New Zealand only revealed how a transparent government supports accountability and deter corruption.

The Corruption Perception Index is based on the expert views of the World Bank, Economist Intelligence Unit, African Development Bank, Bertelsmann Foundation, Freedom House and other groups.

Neighbouring country Australia ranked 8th in the global index.

World Justice Project's Rule of Law Index

  1. Denmark
  2. Norway
  3. Sweden
  4. Finland
  5. Netherlands
  6. New Zealand
  7. Austria
  8. Australia
  9. Germany
  10. Singapore

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