The Central Bank of the Russian Federation, also known as the Bank of Russia or Банк России (in Russian), is the central bank and the primary financial regulator of Russia. It was established in 1990, following the dissolution of the State Bank of the USSR, and its headquarters are located in Moscow. The Bank of Russia operates under the Russian Federation Constitution and the Federal Law "On the Central Bank of the Russian Federation (Bank of Russia)."
The main objectives and responsibilities of the Central Bank of the Russian Federation include:
- Ensuring the stability of the national currency, the Russian Ruble: The Bank of Russia is responsible for controlling inflation and maintaining the stability of the national currency by implementing various monetary policies, such as adjusting interest rates and regulating money supply.
- Implementing monetary policy: The Bank of Russia uses various instruments like open market operations, reserve requirements, and refinancing rates to control inflation and maintain economic stability.
- Managing the country's foreign exchange reserves: The central bank manages Russia's foreign exchange reserves to ensure the stability of the currency, maintain liquidity, and support the balance of payments.
- Supervising and regulating the financial system: The Bank of Russia is responsible for overseeing and regulating financial institutions, including banks, insurance companies, pension funds, and other non-banking financial organizations, to ensure their stability, transparency, and compliance with the applicable laws and regulations.
- Acting as the lender of last resort: In times of financial crisis or instability, the Bank of Russia can provide liquidity support to financial institutions facing temporary difficulties.
- Issuing banknotes and coins: The Bank of Russia is responsible for the issuance, circulation, and withdrawal of banknotes and coins in the country. The Russian Ruble (₽ or RUB) is the official currency of the Russian Federation.
- Managing the country's payment system: The central bank oversees and ensures the smooth functioning of the payment system in Russia, facilitating the efficient and secure transfer of funds between different participants in the economy.
- Representing Russia in international financial institutions: The Bank of Russia participates in the activities of international organizations such as the International Monetary Fund (IMF), the World Bank, and the Bank for International Settlements (BIS), representing Russia's interests in these institutions.
The Central Bank of the Russian Federation is led by a Governor, who is appointed by the President of Russia for a term of five years, with the possibility of reappointment. The Governor and the Bank's leadership are accountable to the State Duma (the lower house of the Russian Parliament) and are required to report on the bank's activities and policies periodically.