Exchange Currency

Central Bank of Costa Rica

The Central Bank of Costa Rica is the central bank of Costa Rica. Costa Rica’s banking system consists of:
  • the central bank;
  • 3 state-owned banks, which account for nearly half of total banking assets;
  • a state-owned mortgage bank;
  • 18 commercial banks;
  • 4 mutual house-building companies;
  • 12 private finance companies;
  • 27 savings and loans cooperatives;
  • 30 investment and retirement funds or trusts;
  • the state insurance company;

The Central Bank of Costa Rica is in charge of establishing banking policy. It is then up to the SUGEF (the General Supervisory Agency of Finance) to enforce compliance with Central Bank policies. All banks (both public and private) are subject to the policies dictated by the Central Bank of Costa Rica.

Being a central bank recognized by the Costa Rican society and the international community for its efficiency, transparency and credibility in keeping inflation low and stable.

In pursuit of its mission, and to maintain the internal and external stability of the national currency (currency of Costa Rica is Costa Rican Colon) and ensuring its conversion into other currencies, the main objectives of the Central Bank of Costa Rica are as follows:
  • Maintain internal stability of the national currency, seeking to turn the full employment of productive resources;
  • Maintain external stability of the national currency and ensure their free conversion to other currencies;
  • Promote a stable system of financial intermediation, efficient and competitive;
  • Enhance the efficiency of domestic payments system and maintain normal function;
  • Ensure the operational excellence of the institution, understood as the execution of functions essential to the fulfillment of institutional objectives to the best possible cost and under acceptable risk;

Similar to other Central Banks in the world, the functions of Central Bank of Costa Rica include providing banking services to the Government of Costa Rica and financial institutions, issuing the domestic currency, regulating commercial banks and other financial institutions, providing economic advice to the Government, conducting research and publishing information on monetary and other economic developments. Only notes and coins issued by the Central Bank shall be legal tender in Costa Rica.

Central Bank of Costa Rica, its responsibilities under the Act, the following essential functions:
  • The maintenance of external value and the conversion of national currency;
  • Custody and administration of the International Monetary Reserves of the Nation;
  • The definition and management of monetary and exchange policy;
  • Management as a counselor and state bank-teller;
  • The promotion of conditions conducive to strengthening the liquidity, solvency and proper functioning of the National Financial System;
  • The issuance of banknotes and coins, according to the real needs of the national economy;
  • The overall policy of credit and the supervision and coordination of National Financial System;
  • Custody of the reserve requirements of financial intermediaries;
  • The establishment, operation and monitoring of the compensation system;
  • The establishment of regulations for the establishment, operation and control of financial institutions;
  • Collaboration with economic agencies in the country, to better achieve its goals;
  • The performance of any other functions, according to its essential condition of the Central Bank, it is responsible;

Useful links

Currency of Costa Rica:
Costa Rican Colon
List of Central Banks:
Central Banks
Official website of Central Bank of Costa Rica:
Ministry of Finance of Costa Rica: