The overseas work of the Bank of England

Quarterly Bulletin 1967 Q4
Published on 01 December 1967

The Overseas Department of the Bank of England is probably larger than that of any other central bank; this article discusses briefly some of the reasons for this, indicating the nature and range of the overseas activities in which the Bank are involved.

The starting point is that sterling is an international currency and hence the Bank of England is - in a sense that most central banks are not - an international bank. Eighty overseas central banks and monetary authorities have accounts at the Bank and conduct many of their sterling transactions over these accounts. In addition, as H.M. Government's own bankers and financial advisers, the Bank are continually called on to help formulate and execute external financial policy. In order to fulfil these functions the Bank have for long laid particular stress on developing and maintaining close contacts with central banks and other financial institutions abroad. Indeed, the Bank have played an important part in establishing quite a large number of central banks or monetary agencies in other countries.

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