Establishment and Functions

The Second Meeting of Central Bank Technicians of the American Continent, convened in Santiago in December 1949, adopted a proposal to establish a teaching and research institute in Latin America for the exchange of information among monetary authorities, and set up a Committee for its establishment. The Committee's recommendations were discussed at the Third Meeting of Central Bank Technicians in Havana, February-March 1952, and by-laws and general purposes of a Center for Latin American Monetary Studies (CEMLA) were approved. CEMLA was officially established in September 1952. 

The main objectives of CEMLA are: 

  • To promote a better understanding of monetary and banking matters in Latin America and the Caribbean, as well as the pertinent aspects of fiscal and exchange rate policies; 

  • To assist in improving the qualifications of central bank and other financial agencies personnel in Latin America and the Caribbean through the organization of seminars and special training courses and the publication of surveys and research studies;
  • To conduct research and systematize the results of past experience in the above fields; and 
  • To inform on developments in regional and international monetary and financial policy issues. 


The Center is formed by 52 institutions; 31 of which are associated members with the right to vote at the CEMLA's Assembly. The budget is provided through annual contributions of the associated members and collaborators. 

In the past, it's been possible to develop specific projects thanks to the participation of the International Monetary Fund, the Inter-American Development Bank, the Ford Foundation, the International Development Agency (USA) and the Rockefeller Foundation, through their financial assistance. Besides the associated and collaborator members, many other banking and international organizations cooperates through the participation of their technical personnel in conferences, seminars and courses or serving as advisers. This is the case of the Bank for International Settlements, the Bank of England, The World Bank and the Economic Commission for Latin America and the Caribbean (UN), among others.