Banco Central de Bolivia

Bolivia’s main bank is Banco Central de Bolivia (BCB). It is responsible for issuing money and for creating monetary policy, which includes determining the amount of money and credit available.

BCB is the only institution in Bolivia that can issue money - whether as paper bills/notes or as metallic coins.

Banco Central de Bolivia monitors all systems of payments that involve the effective use of money - including payments and transfers via credit cards, checks, stocks and electronic transfer.

It is also responsible for administering Bolivia’s international reserves and for normalizing the exchange rate of the boliviano - Bolivia’s unit of currency - in relation to the currencies of other countries.

Banco Central de Bolivia Headquarters in La Paz, photo by Elias BizannelBCB aims to maintain control over the use of money in Bolivia in order to contribute to the country’s economic and social development.

History

The institution that is now Banco Central de Bolivia was founded on July 28, 1928, under the government of President Hernando Siles.

The name Banco Central de Bolivia was adopted on April 20 of the following year.

It was reorganized in 1945.

In 1995, Bolivia’s Central Bank Law made changes to the amount of control that BCB has over Bolivia’s banking sector.

Location

When Banco Central de Brazil first began its activities, in July 1929, it was located on the corner of Ayacucho and Mercado streets (Calles Ayacucho y Mercado) in La Paz.

Today, the BCB headquarters are still in that location, in a skyscraper that was designed by the Brazilian architect Emilio Villanueva and was built between 1976 and 1980.

The Banco Central de Bolivia headquarters is one of the tallest buildings in Bolivia.