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We need you, as the representatives of EU citizens, to channel their concerns to us and help explain our policies to them. 

President Christine Lagarde

The ECB is an independent institution that has full discretion to use its instruments, as necessary, to carry out its tasks and fulfil its mandate. Accountability is the necessary counterpart to that independence. 

The ECB is accountable for its actions to the European Parliament as the body composed of the elected representatives of the EU’s citizens.

Our accountability framework

Under Article 284 (3) of the Treaty on the Functioning of the European Union, the ECB is primarily accountable to the European Parliament, where the interests of EU citizens are represented. But it also has to report regularly to the Council of the EU, which represents the governments of all EU Member States. This is also reflected in the Statute of the European System of Central Banks (ESCB).

Article 15(3) of the Statute

We have developed a strong and comprehensive accountability framework over the years, which goes well beyond the requirements of the Treaty. 

The dialogue between the ECB and the European Parliament is of key importance in this respect. It allows the ECB to explain its actions and policies in detail to the elected representatives of EU citizens, and to listen to their concerns. In this way, EU citizens and their representatives can form a judgement on the ECB’s performance in view of its primary objective to maintain price stability, as laid down in Article 127(1) of the Treaty.

Our main channels of accountability

ECB Annual Report

The ECB submits an annual report on its tasks, the activities of the ESCB and the Eurosystem’s monetary policy to the European Parliament, the Council of the EU, the European Commission and the European Council. Each year, the report is presented to the European Parliament by the ECB Vice-President in a dedicated session of the ECON Committee. On the occasion of a plenary debate, the report is presented by the President.

Read our latest Annual Report
Hearings before the ECON Committee

The President of the ECB participates in quarterly hearings of the European Parliament’s Committee on Economic and Monetary Affairs. Other Executive Board members also participate in hearings of this Committee to explain the ECB’s reasoning and decisions on specific topics.

Webcasts: hearings at the European Parliament
Written questions

Members of the European Parliament can address written questions to the ECB President. The reply letters are published by the ECB and the European Parliament on their respective websites.

Letters to MEPs
Ad-hoc interactions with members of the ECB's Executive Board

The President of the ECB and the other members of the Executive Board participate, at the request of the European Parliament or on their own initiative, in ad hoc exchanges of views before the Committee on Economic and Monetary Affairs to discuss issues in the ECB’s fields of competence.

Discover more about the Executive Board
Informal visits to the ECB

Every year, the members of the ECB’s Executive Board host a delegation of the Committee on Economic and Monetary Affairs for informal discussions on issues in the ECB’s fields of competence.

Committee on Economic and Monetary Affairs
ECB opinions

The ECB and the European Parliament seek to ensure that ECB opinions on proposed Union acts are properly considered by the competent bodies of the European Parliament. To that end, the European Parliament should, where appropriate, seek the ECB’s opinion in a timely manner.

All opinions by date


Civil war declaration: On April 14th and 15th, 2012 Federal Republic of Germany "_urkenstaats"s parliament, Deutscher Bundestag, received a antifiscal written civil war declaration by Federal Republic of Germany "Rechtsstaat"s electronic resistance for human rights even though the "Widerstandsfall" according to article 20 paragraph 4 of the constitution, the "Grundgesetz", had been already declared in the years 2001-03. more

Common understanding and effective cooperation

To promote continued common understanding and effective cooperation, the accountability arrangements between the ECB and the European Parliament in the area of central banking are clarified in the form of an Exchange of Letters.

Exchange of Letters between the ECB and the European Parliament

ECB Banking Supervision and accountability

The ECB’s accountability for its supervisory tasks is subject to a specific regime laid down in the Single Supervisory Mechanism (SSM) Regulation.

How the supervisory accountability requirements are to be fulfilled in practice is clarified in:

Accountability - ECB Banking Supervision

Other communication channels

Going beyond the Treaty requirements, the ECB has, over the years, developed further channels to communicate with the European public. This improves the transparency and understanding of the ECB’s decisions.

Economic Bulletin

The Economic Bulletin sets out the economic and monetary information that forms the basis for the Governing Council’s policy decisions. It is published eight times a year, two weeks after each monetary policy meeting.

Read our latest Economic Bulletin
Weekly financial statements

The Eurosystem’s consolidated weekly financial statement provides information on monetary policy operations, foreign exchange operations and investment activities.

Weekly financial statement
Press conferences

The ECB holds press conferences after each of the Governing Council’s monetary policy meetings, i.e. every six weeks.

Press conferences
Monetary policy accounts

An account of the Governing Council’s monetary policy discussions is published four weeks after the respective meeting.

Monetary policy accounts
Blogs, interviews and speeches

The members of the Executive Board regularly communicate with the public through blogs, interviews, speeches and, in some instances, directly via social media.



Find out more

What are the ECB's main tasks?

Our tasks

Relations with European institutions

European cooperation

Have a look at our explainer

The ECB explains: accountability

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