ESCB, Eurosystem, ECB

The tasks of the ESCB and the Eurosystem are codified in the Treaty establishing the European Union (the Treaty) and in the Statute of the European System of Central Banks (ESCB) and of the European Central Bank (ECB), which is an annex to the Treaty.

The Treaty deals with the ESCB, not the Eurosystem, since it was assumed that all EU Member States would adopt the euro. Until that time comes, however, these tasks will be performed by the Eurosystem.

The primary objective of the ESCB is to maintain price stability. The Treaty further stipulates that, without prejudice to price stability, the ESCB is to support the general economic policies in the European Union with a view to contributing to the achievement of the European Union's objectives.

The aim of the Union (Article 2 of the Treaty on European Union), is to promote a high level of employment and achieve sustainable and non-inflationary growth.

Basic tasks

Article 105, paragraph 2, of the Treaty establishing the European Union lays down the following basic tasks:

Additional tasks

  • Banknotes: the ECB has the exclusive right to authorise the issue of banknotes within the euro area.
  • Statistics: the ECB, assisted by the national central banks, collects statistical information necessary for its work from national authorities or directly from economic subjects.
  • Financial stability and supervision: the Eurosystem contributes to the smooth implementation of the policies of competent authorities responsible for supervising the prudential business of credit institutions and contributes to the stability of the financial system.
  • International and European cooperation: the ECB, in the framework of fulfilling tasks of the Eurosystem, maintains working relationships with respective institutions, authorities and forums within the EU and outside the EU.
Slovakia adopted the euro on 1 January 2009 after the European Council approved its entry into the euro area on 8 July 2008.