The annual report analyzes the efforts of 188 countries to comply with minimum standards needed to eliminate trafficking of men, women and children for sexual exploitation or forced labor.
It rates each nation's efforts according to a Tier system -- Tier 1 being most compliant, through to Tier 3 being the worst offenders
Tier 2 is the most volatile category because it includes a U.S. State Department Watch List for countries that are deemed to not be doing enough to counter human traffickers.
In 2014, 89 countries were listed as Tier 2.
Another 44 countries were on the Tier 2 Watch List -- a warning that unless more was done, they could be downgraded to Tier 3 -- a category for the least compliant nations.
Penalties for countries demoted to Tier 3 are at the discretion of the U.S. President, but could include restrictions on non-humanitarian assistance and funding
Thailand, Malaysia, Venezuela and The Gambia dropped from the Tier 2 Watch List to join 20 other nations on Tier 3 in 2014
Of the 200 countries surveyed by the TIP report, only 31 countries including Australia, the U.S., UK, Sweden, Canada, South Korea, Armenia, Taiwan, Nicaragua and Chile were listed as Tier 1 countries.