Arab countries get a lot of hate in the West for their perceived support and tolerance of terrorism. But according to the Basel AML Index 2017 [PDF], many Arab countries are relatively unlikely to launder money or finance terrorism.
The annual ranking, compiled by the independent anti-corruption Swiss group Basel Institute on Governance – released in August – reveals that Iran is actually the country most likely to be involved in shady financial dealings globally.
While Saudi Arabia is often accused by Western media of financing terrorism, the report shows that the kingdom is actually less likely to do so than Turkey, Pakistan, China, and Russia. Overall, the kingdom ranks 93 out of 146 countries, with 1 being the worst ranking.
Here's how the 14 Arab countries included in the index ranked in comparison to each other, from most likely to launder money and finance terrorism, to least likely.
1. Lebanon (27th most likely globally)
2. Sudan (29th)
3. Mauritania (32nd)
4. Yemen (37th)
5. Algeria (54th)
6. Morocco (57th)
7. Tunisia (59th)
8. UAE (72nd)
9. Bahrain (81st)
10. Egypt (87th)
11. Kuwait (90th)
12. Saudi Arabia (93rd)
13. Qatar (107th)
14. Jordan (111th)
In the Arab world, Jordan is the country least likely to finance terrorism or launder money, according to the ranking.
Globally, Finland, Lithuania, and Estonia are the three least likely countries to have problems with money laundering or financing terrorism.
After Iran, Afghanistan and Guinea-Bissau are the countries most likely to have shady financial dealings.