International cooperation

The Central Bank of Iceland undertakes extensive responsibilities and obligations in the field of international finance on behalf of the Icelandic Government, through cooperation with other central banks and international economic and monetary organisations. These include the International Monetary Fund (IMF), the Bank for International Settlements (BIS), the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD), and the European financial supervisory bodies.


International Monetary Fund (IMF)

The IMF’s aim is to strengthen international cooperation in foreign exchange matters, promote exchange rate stability, and facilitate unrestricted foreign exchange transactions. The Central Bank represents Iceland at the Fund.


The Bank for International Settlements (BIS)

Established in 1930, the BIS, located in Basel, Switzerland, is the oldest international financial institution in the world. It is owned jointly by a large number of central banks. The BIS is both a bank for central banks and an important institution for research and analysis in fields pertaining to central bank activities, not least monetary policy and financial stability. It is also a forum for wide-ranging international cooperation among central banks and for supervision of financial activities. A noteworthy example of this is the preparation of regulations on banks’ capital ratios.

The Central Bank is a shareholder in the Bank for International Settlements. Central Bank representatives participate in various cooperative measures through the BIS.


Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD)

The OECD is an intergovernmental organisation with 38 member countries. Its main objective is to encourage sustainable economic growth and improved living standards for its member countries, while maintaining financial stability.

The OECD was formed from another institution, the Organisation for European Economic Co-operation (OEEC), which was founded in 1947 at the behest of the US and Canada in order to organise and administer the Marshall Plan. In 1961, the OECD took over the activities of the OEEC, which then had 20 member countries.

Central Bank of Iceland staff members participate in various OECD committees on a regular basis. These include the Economic Policy Committee, Working Party 1, the Committee on Financial Markets, and an expert committee on government debt management. OECD experts visit Iceland regularly and hold discussions on economic affairs with policymakers, as it does in all of the Organisation’s member countries. Following the visits, the OECD publishes its assessment of economic conditions.


European financial supervisory bodies (EBA, EIOPA, ESMA and ESRB)

The Central Bank of Iceland participates in the work of European financial supervisory bodies, the European Banking Authority (EBA), the European Insurance and Occupational Pensions Authority (EIOPA), and the European Securities and Markets Authority (ESMA). The Central Bank also participates in the work of the European Systemic Risk Board (ESRB) and subgroups on its behalf, and thus has access to European analyses of systemic risk. In these fora, the Bank has the same rights and responsibilities as the supervisory authorities in EU member countries but does not have voting rights. Participation in the Board of Supervisors and the General Board, standing committees, and work groups of European supervisory bodies enables the Bank to keep abreast of legislative amendments and participate in developing European financial market legislation. With its participation, the Central Bank also does its part to ensure harmonised implementation of European financial market legislation in the EEA. Such participation supports the implementation of new European legislation in Iceland, facilitates it, and contributes to more effective supervision after implementation is complete.

Below are links to European supervisory bodies’ websites: