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The European Central Bank and the national central banks together constitute the Eurosystem, the central banking system of the euro area. The main objective of the Eurosystem is to maintain price stability: safeguarding the value of the euro.
The European Central Bank is responsible for the prudential supervision of credit institutions located in the euro area and participating non-euro area Member States, within the Single Supervisory Mechanism, which also comprises the national competent authorities. It thereby contributes to the safety and soundness of the banking system and the stability of the financial system within the EU and each participating Member State.
The Governing Council is the main decision-making body of the ECB. It consists of the six members of the Executive Board, plus the governors of the national central banks of the 19 euro area countries.
The Governing Council assesses economic and monetary developments and takes its monetary policy decisions every six weeks. The monetary policy decision is explained in detail at a press conference held every six weeks. The President, assisted by the Vice-President, chairs the press conference.