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S. Korea ranks No.18 in intl defense integrity report

This Oct. 18, 2021, file photo shows South Korea's Marine Corps demonstrating a combat training at a military base on the western border island of Baengnyeong. (Yonhap)
This Oct. 18, 2021, file photo shows South Korea's Marine Corps demonstrating a combat training at a military base on the western border island of Baengnyeong. (Yonhap)
South Korea ranked 18th out of 85 countries in terms of integrity in the defense sector last year, an international anti-corruption organization said Tuesday.

According to the Government Defense Integrity Index (GDI) by Transparency International, South Korea scored 59 points on a 100-point scale, receiving grade C, which means that a country has a moderate risk of corruption in the defense sector, according to Transparency International Korea.

GDI is an index analyzing the risk of corruption in defense and security institutions based on assessment across five risk areas -- political risk, procurement risk, personnel risk, financial risk and operations risk.

South Korea scored 79 points and 75 points in personnel and political areas, respectively, and 62 points in procurement and 13 points in operations.

In the report, countries were classified according to the level of risk from grade A with very low risk to F with critical risk.

New Zealand was the only country that received grade A, followed by eight countries with grade B, including Britain, Norway and Germany.

South Korea received grade C along with Japan, the United States, Sweden, Australia and other countries.

The Transparency International said South Korea has restrictions on open competition in the defense area, an ineffective external audit system and a military operation system vulnerable to corruption.

"People's distrust was high in the defense sector in South Korea due to corruption cases, but the country is moving towards improvement by bettering the system," You Han-beom, the executive director of the Korean branch, said. (Yonhap)

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