Asia

Singapore scores poorly in ability to prevent illicit trade

The wealthy city-state of Singapore — with its flourishing trade, orderly life and almost non-existent crime — is hardly a place one would associate with illegal trade. But a new report by a reputed organization reveals that in fact the country has a poor record of preventing just that.

The new Economist Intelligence Unit released a 100-point index Wednesday that placed Singapore at seven out of 17 Asian countries for its ability to prevent illicit trade.

The index evaluated countries against 14 indicators including transparency, intellectual property and customs.

Singapore scored 69.8 points to tie with Taiwan. Still, it is behind neighbor Malaysia (71.8), often seen as a nation with a far less efficient government. The top performers were Australia (85.2), New Zealand (81.8) and Hong Kong (81.4).