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European Central Bank

The bank is responsible for monetary policy within the eurozone. Its main goals are maintaining price stability and safeguarding the value of the euro. It does this together with the eurozone's 12 national central banks, by setting interest rates, conducting foreign exchange operations, and managing national foreign reserves.

The bank is formally independent, along the lines of the German Bundesbank. When taking decision on monetary policy, neither the European Central Bank nor the national central banks are allowed to take instructions from EU institutions or member states. The ECB's own foreign reserve assets amount to 40 billion euros

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European Central Bank headquarters, Frankfurt

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