Iraqi economy lost about $1 billion in 2010 due to high level of corruption among state officials, the country's chief corruption fighter said Monday.
"Confirmed damages from corruption in 2010 totaled 1.135 trillion dinar [about $1 bln]," the chairman of Iraq's anti-corruption commission told Al Sharqiya television.
A total of 709 high-ranking state officials, including nine ministers and 75 department chiefs were convicted of corruption last year.
Corruption has become a major problem for Iraq, and the fight against it will be tough and lengthy, the official said.
"We do not have a magic wand that would help us to eliminate corruption in four or five years," he said.
In 2010, Iraq was listed by watchdog group Transparency International (TI) as the fourth most corrupt country in the world, after Afghanistan, Burma (Myanmar) and Somalia.
The survey was carried out in 178 countries. To form its Corruption Perception Index, TI compiles surveys that ask businessmen and analysts, both in and outside the countries they are analyzing.
BAGHDAD, January 4 (RIA Novosti)