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Honduras

Capital

Tegucigalpa

Territory

111,890km²

Population (2020)

9,904,608

GDP Total (2020)

23.83B USD

GDP Per Capita (2020)

2,406 USD

Icome Group

Lower middle income

Convention Implementation

66.5
In progress

Western Hemisphere Ranking

60.7

13th of 31 countries

Central America Ranking

65.0

5th of 8 countries

Corruption Resilience

42.0
Vulnerable

Western Hemisphere Ranking

54.4

26th of 31 countries

Central America Ranking

50.3

6th of 8 countries

Convention Implementation

Score by thematic sections and measures

Prevention

In progress
52.2

Western Hemisphere 46.3

Central America 50.9

Standards of Conduct

In progress
62.5

Western Hemisphere 42.8

Central America 59.8

Enforcement of Standards of Conduct

Implemented
71.8

Western Hemisphere 50.6

Central America 62.1

Training of Public Officials

Not Implemented
7.8

Western Hemisphere 36.8

Central America 38.0

Asset and Conflicts of Interests Declarations

Implemented
71.8

Western Hemisphere 42.3

Central America 57.0

Transparency in Government Contracting

Core-deficient
26.5

Western Hemisphere 33.1

Central America 36.6

Elimination of Favorable Tax Treatment

Implemented
100

Western Hemisphere 47.1

Central America 65.1

Oversight Bodies

Core-deficient
21.8

Western Hemisphere 36.0

Central America 36.0

Measures to Deter Domestic and Foreign Bribery

Implemented
100

Western Hemisphere 36.7

Central America 53.9

Encouraging Participation by Civil Society

Core-deficient
33.5

Western Hemisphere 43.0

Central America 58.1

Study of Other Prevention Measures

Core-deficient
26.5

Western Hemisphere 44.9

Central America 42.9

Criminalization and law enforcement

In progress
64.5

Western Hemisphere 61.1

Central America 65.0

Protection of Those who Report Acts of Corruption

In progress
62.5

Western Hemisphere 30.7

Central America 42.1

Scope

Implemented
100

Western Hemisphere 67.7

Central America 75.9

Jurisdiction: Offense-in-Territory

In progress
68.7

Western Hemisphere 74.6

Central America 90.0

Jurisdiction: Offense-by-National

Core-deficient
35.9

Western Hemisphere 51.9

Central America 69.8

Jurisdiction: Offender-in-Territory

In progress
50

Western Hemisphere 58.8

Central America 55.0

Passive Public Bribery

In progress
50

Western Hemisphere 55.8

Central America 56.7

Active Public Bribery

In progress
62.5

Western Hemisphere 56.4

Central America 59.1

Abuse of Functions

In progress
62.5

Western Hemisphere 47.0

Central America 57.7

Money Laundering

Core-deficient
40.6

Western Hemisphere 55.8

Central America 54.2

Participation and Attempt

Implemented
82.8

Western Hemisphere 58.4

Central America 67.1

Active Foreign Bribery

Implemented
100

Western Hemisphere 39.0

Central America 51.7

Illicit Enrichment

Implemented
85.9

Western Hemisphere 54.7

Central America 69.8

Use of State Property

Implemented
71.8

Western Hemisphere 79.5

Central America 87.6

Illicit Acquisition of a Benefit

Implemented
71.8

Western Hemisphere 52.1

Central America 62.5

Public Embezzlement

Implemented
71.8

Western Hemisphere 77.6

Central America 87.6

Passive Foreign Bribery

Not Implemented
0

Western Hemisphere 25.6

Central America 33.9

Private Bribery

Core-deficient
21.8

Western Hemisphere 22.7

Central America 18.5

Private Embezzlement

In progress
68.7

Western Hemisphere 64.7

Central America 63.2

Obstruction of Justice

Implemented
71.8

Western Hemisphere 71.4

Central America 74.0

Liability of Legal Persons

Implemented
71.8

Western Hemisphere 61.3

Central America 61.0

Statute of Limitations

Implemented
100

Western Hemisphere 79.6

Central America 87.6

Prosecution, Adjudication and Sanctions

Implemented
82.8

Western Hemisphere 69.5

Central America 75.5

Consequences and Compensation

In progress
50

Western Hemisphere 70.3

Central America 73.4

Cooperation With Law Enforcement

Implemented
82.8

Western Hemisphere 72.2

Central America 79.2

Asset Recovery

In progress
47.6

Western Hemisphere 66.4

Central America 72.7

International cooperation

Implemented
79.3

Western Hemisphere 68.9

Central America 74.5

Assistance Without Criminalization

Implemented
82.8

Western Hemisphere 79.8

Central America 89.0

Inclusion in Extradition Treaties

In progress
71.0

Western Hemisphere 55.1

Central America 55.8

Convention as Legal Basis for Extradition

Implemented
82.8

Western Hemisphere 47.5

Central America 57.6

Automatic Application Without Treaty

In progress
71.0

Western Hemisphere 52.7

Central America 54.4

Prosecution Without Extradition

Implemented
85.9

Western Hemisphere 57.2

Central America 55.8

Custody

Implemented
74.2

Western Hemisphere 73.4

Central America 79.1

Assistance

In progress
68.7

Western Hemisphere 58.0

Central America 58.9

Impossibility of Claiming Bank Secrecy

Implemented
100

Western Hemisphere 84.0

Central America 98.2

Limited Use of Information

In progress
68.7

Western Hemisphere 82.6

Central America 88.0

Nature of Act

Implemented
100

Western Hemisphere 84.3

Central America 97.8

Designate Central Authorities

Implemented
100

Western Hemisphere 75.9

Central America 90.2

Responsibilities of Central Authorities

In progress
50.7

Western Hemisphere 71.5

Central America 72.7

Communication Between Central Authorities

In progress
57.8

Western Hemisphere 67.3

Central America 73.6

Special Investigative Techniques

Implemented
85.9

Western Hemisphere 56.9

Central America 75.7

Technical Cooperation

Implemented
90.6

Western Hemisphere 62.8

Central America 69.9

Anti-corruption conventions timeline

199619971998199920002001200220032004200520062007200820092010201120122013201420152016

Conventions

  • IACAC - Inter-American Convention Against Corruption
  • UNCAC - United Nations Convention against Corruption
  • OECD Anti-Bribery Convention

Key events

  • Signed
  • Ratifed / acceded
  • Review rounds

Convention Implementation Analysis

Honduras signed the Inter-American Convention Against Corruption (IACAC) on March 29, 1996, and ratified it on May 25, 1998. It is a State Party to the Follow-Up Mechanism for the Implementation of the Inter-American Convention against Corruption (MESICIC) since December 8, 2001. The country also signed the United Nations Convention Against Corruption (UNCAC) on May 17, 2004, and subsequently ratified it on May 23, 2005. Accordingly, Honduras has undergone four rounds of review (Honduras was suspended from OAS between 2009 and 2011 and did not take part in the third round of review) under MESICIC, and one round of review under the UNCAC review mechanism.

Honduras’s record in implementing its commitments to IACAC and UNCAC exhibits a number of successes and a few failures. With an overall score of 66.6, the measures adopted place the country squarely at the middle point of compliance with international norms, surrounded by Ecuador (65.1), Uruguay (66.1), The Bahamas (67.1), and Guatemala (67.2). However, progress in implementation is somewhat unequally distributed. While the country evidences only a gradual increase in the rate of success from one section of measures to the other, over half of all deficient and unimplemented measures are found in regard to prevention. That being said, all but one measures below the “implemented” level receive a score of 50 or above—a degree of progress that reflects the overall state of the country’s performance.

The prevention of corruption is undergoing, classified as “in progress” by its average score but with substantial differences across the section, with half of all measures found to be deficient or unimplemented. The deficient measures are the state of oversight bodies (21.9), transparency in government contracting (26.6), the study of preventive measures related to equitable compensation (26.6), and the initiatives to encourage the participation of civil society (33.6). The training of public officials receives a score of 7.8 and is considered to be unimplemented. In this respect, the Honduran Prosecutors’ Association informed during the fifth round of MESICIC that “[t]here is no structured system in the country that provides for and ensures the proper training of employees of public institutions.” It is also reported that “Honduras does not have a body that is dedicated to the training of public employees” and that challenges arise from “a lack of funding, human resources, and the necessary infrastructure to meet the training needs of all of the employees of the central government.” On the other hand, two measures are found to be fully implemented—the actions to deter domestic and foreign bribery related to accounting regulations, and the elimination of favorable tax treatment for corrupt expenditure.

In terms of criminalization and law enforcement, Honduras shows better results than those regarding prevention, with almost two thirds of all measures within this section are found in progress. Indeed, a number of significant measures receive a score above 60—the criminalization of active bribery in the public sector, abuse of functions, the illicit acquisition of a benefit (i.e., influence trading), public embezzlement, and obstruction of justice. Furthermore, two important measures required by UNCAC also receive positive scores: the liability of legal persons and the criminalization of embezzlement in the private sector (both with a score of 71.9)—although the criminalization of bribery in the private sector and passive bribery of foreign officials, also required by UNCAC, are found deficient and fully unimplemented, respectively. The country’s efforts pertaining to money laundering are also considered to be deficient.

Finally, Honduras’s mild implementation of its commitments regarding international cooperation is reflected in almost two thirds of all measures within this section receiving an “implemented” score and no measures found deficient at core or unimplemented.

Corruption Resilience

Score by indicator

Social Context

Moderately Resilient
45.3

Western Hemisphere 64.8

Central America 59.7

Quality of Government

Vulnerable
36.4

Western Hemisphere 50.6

Central America 47.3

Rule of Law

Vulnerable
31.6

Western Hemisphere 51.1

Central America 43.5

Business Stability

Moderately Resilient
48.3

Western Hemisphere 50.5

Central America 51.6

Violence & Security

Moderately Resilient
48.

Western Hemisphere 55.0

Central America 49.1

Corruption Resilience score over the time

Analysis

Honduras's 2020 social context indicator increased by 0.28 points from the previous year, resulting in a score of 45.34, which fails to meet the regional average of 64.89 by 19.55 points and falls within the bottom percentile for the Western Hemisphere. The country’s performance across the subregion was poor, where it received one of the lowest ranks (7/8), followed by Nicaragua. Throughout the decade, the mini-max range for Honduras was 42.49 (2011/2012) and 52.74 (2014), with a range of 10.25 points. Honduras’s social context indicator was attributed to the dramatically poor status of civil liberties and political rights throughout the country. While constitutional guarantees ‘protect’ press freedom, journalists are frequently subject to harassment, intimidation, and death threats. According to Reports Without Borders, following the 2009 coup d’état, the government has consistently targeted the media.

With regard to the quality of governance and institutions, the country's score decreased by 2.98 points from the previous year, resulting in a score of 36.48. Honduras's indicator score is substantially low and falls below the Western Hemisphere regional average of 50.63 by 14.15 points. Since 2010, the country's score has steady declined, wherein 2010, the county's score was 45.14, 8.66 points dropped between 2010 and 2020. The country's quality of government score is attributed to widespread and worsening corruption within the country, the government's lack of control over corruption, and weak-preforming democracy. The country is characterized by democratic fragility.

Honduras's rule of law indicator declined in 2020 by 3.77 points from the previous year. The indicator's Western Hemisphere regional 2020 average was 51.15, and Honduras's score was 19.53 points below the regional average. Honduras's rule of law indicator falls within the bottom percentile for the Western Hemisphere region. Over the last decade, the mini-max range for Honduras was 31.62 (2020) and 41.14 (2011), with a range of 9.52 points. Honduras's 2020 rule of law indicator was primarily impacted by the lack of judicial independence and impartiality, which remains susceptible to the influence of powerful political and business elites.

In terms of Honduras’s business stability score, the country’s indicator increased by 0.55 points from the previous year but continues to fall below the regional average of 50.53 for 2020. Throughout the decade, the country's indicator score has varied, where its highest score was achieved in 2017 with 59.50, and its lowest score was in 2015 with 44.05. Honduras's business stability indicator is primarily influenced by the lack of efficiency in regulations and widespread corruption.

The country’s violence and security indicator for 2020 increased by 8.36 points from the previous year, resulting in a score of 48.48. Of all the previous indicators, Honduras’s violence and security score has improved the most dramatically. Despite this improvement, Honduras's score fails to meet the Western Hemisphere average of 55.04 by 6.56 points. Throughout the last decade, the mini-max range for Honduras was 33.53 (2014) and 48.48 (2020), with a range of 14.95 points. While the country has experienced slight improvements in its score, it consistently ranks below its subregional counterparts. Honduras's violence and security indicator score for 2020 was primarily influenced by the country’s unprecedented homicide rate and the widespread presence of criminal gangs.