(Communicated by the Bank of Israel Spokesman)
June 30, 2003
The Bank for International Settlement (BIS), whose head office is in Basel, Switzerland, today announced its decision to invite the Bank of Israel to become a member of the BIS, together with a number of other countries. The decision was notified to the Governor of the Bank of Israel, Dr. David Klein, who is in Basel for the Annual General Meeting of the BIS. The decision to join the BIS requires the approval of the Israeli government.
The BIS is the oldest international financial organization. It was founded in Basel in 1930 as part of the Hague Convention, and currently about fifty central banks are members. The aims of the BIS are to promote monetary and financial cooperation between central banks, and its activities have widespread influence that extends to non-member countries too.
The Bank of Israel has had observer status at the BIS for several years, in the course of which numerous professional contacts and ties of cooperation were established. The invitation to Israel to join the BIS reflects appreciation of the level of Israel’s economic development and its ability to contribute as a member in promoting the financial and banking issues dealt with by the BIS. Israel’s participation is a milestone along the path of the development of its financial markets, and is evidence of the advances made in these spheres over the last decade. By joining the BIS Israel is broadening its network of close contacts that it has had for years with important international financial institutions such as the International Monetary Fund (IMF), the World Bank, the Inter-American Development Bank (IADB) and the European Bank for Reconstruction and Development (EBRD). These relations constitute an integral part of the government’s policy to realize the economy’s full growth potential while fostering Israel’s integration into the international markets.
The activities of the BIS in promoting cooperation between central banks include: