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France is divided into eighteen administrative regions (french: régions, singular ), of which thirteen are located in metropolitan France (on the European continent), while the other five are overseas regions (not to be confused with the overseas collectivities, which have a semi-autonomous status). All thirteen metropolitan administrative regions (including Corsica ) are further subdivided into two to thirteen administrative departments, with the prefect of each region's administrative centre's department also acting as the regional prefect. The overseas regions administratively consist of only one department each and hence also have the status of overseas departments. Most administrative regions also have the status of regional territorial collectivities, which comes with a local government, with departmental and communal collectivities below the region level. The exceptions are Corsica, French Guiana, Mayotte and Martinique, where region and department functions are managed by single local governments having consolidated jurisdiction and which are known as single territorial collectivities.


History




1982–2015

The term ''région'' was officially created by the Law of Decentralisation (2 March 1982), which also gave regions their legal status. The first direct elections for regional representatives took place on 16 March 1986. Between 1982 and 2015, there were 22 regions in Metropolitan France. Before 2011, there were four overseas regions (French Guiana, Guadeloupe, Martinique, and Réunion); in 2011 Mayotte became the fifth. } | Strasbourg |align=center| 42 | Formerly a coalition of free cities in Holy Roman Empire, attached to Kingdom of France in 1648; annexed by Germany from Franco-Prussian war to the end of World War I and briefly during World War II |- | | Aquitaine | Aquitaine | oc|Aquitània
eu|Akitania
Saintongeais : ''Aguiéne'' | Bordeaux |align=center| 72 | Guyenne and Gascony |- | | Auvergne | Auvergne | oc|Auvèrnhe / Auvèrnha | Clermont-Ferrand |align=center| 83 | Former province of Auvergne |- | | Brittany | ''Bretagne'' | br|Breizh
Gallo: ''Bertaèyn'' | Rennes |align=center| 53 | Duchy of Brittany |- | | Burgundy | ''Bourgogne'' | Burgundian: ''Bregogne'Borgoégne''
frp|Borgogne | Dijon |align=center| 26 | Duchy of Burgundy |- | | Centre-Val de LoireNew name as of 17 January 2015; formerly named ''Centre''. | ''Centre-Val de Loire'' | | Orléans |align=center| 24 | Located in north-central France; straddles the middle of the Loire Valley |- | | Champagne-Ardenne | ''Champagne-Ardenne'' | | Châlons-en-
Champagne
|align=center| 21 | Former province of Champagne |- | | Franche-Comté | ''Franche-Comté'' | Franc-Comtois: ''Fràntche-Comté''
frp|Franche-Comtât | Besançon |align=center| 43 | Free County of Burgundy (''Franche-Comté'') |- | | Île-de-France | Île-de-France | | Paris |align=center| 11 | Province of Île-de-France and parts of the former province of Champagne |- | | Languedoc-Roussillon | Languedoc-Roussillon | oc|Lengadòc-Rosselhon
ca|Llenguadoc-Rosselló | Montpellier |align=center| 91 | Former provinces of Languedoc and Roussillon |- | | Limousin | Limousin | oc|Lemosin | Limoges |align=center| 74 | Former province of Limousin and parts of Marche, Berry, Auvergne, Poitou and Angoumois |- | | Lorraine | Lorraine | german: Lothringen
Lorraine Franconian: ''Lottringe'' | Metz |align=center| 41 | Named for Charlemagne's son Lothair I, the kingdom of Lotharingia is etymologically the source for the name Lorraine (duchy), Lothringen (German), Lottringe (Lorraine Franconian) |- | | Lower Normandy | ''Basse-Normandie'' | Norman: ''Basse-Normaundie'' | Caen |align=center| 25 |Western half of former province of Normandy |- | | Midi-Pyrénées | Midi-Pyrénées | oc|Miègjorn-Pirenèus
oc|Mieidia-Pirenèus | Toulouse |align=center| 73 | None; created for Toulouse |- | | Nord-Pas-de-Calais | Nord-Pas-de-Calais | | Lille |align=center| 31 | Nord and Pas-de-Calais departments |- | | Pays de la Loire | Pays de la Loire | br|Broioù al Liger | Nantes |align=center| 52 | None; created for Nantes |- | | Picardy | ''Picardie'' | | Amiens |align=center| 22 |Former province of Picardy |- | | Poitou-Charentes | Poitou-Charentes | oc|Peitau-Charantas
Poitevin and Saintongeais : ''Poetou-Chérentes'' | Poitiers |align=center| 54 | Former provinces of Angoumois, Aunis, Poitou and Saintonge |- | | Provence-Alpes-Côte d'Azur (PACA) | Provence-Alpes-Côte d'Azur (PACA) |style="white-space:nowrap;"| Provençal: ''Provença-Aups-Còsta d'Azur''
(''Prouvènço-Aup-Costo d'Azur'') | Marseille |align=center| 93 | Former province of Provence |- | | Rhône-Alpes | ''Rhône-Alpes'' | frp|Rôno-Arpes
oc|Ròse Aups | Lyon |align=center| 82 | Created for Lyon from Dauphiné and Lyonnais provinces and Savoy |- | | Upper Normandy | ''Haute-Normandie'' | Norman: ''Ĥâote-Normaundie'' | Rouen |align=center| 23 | Eastern half of former province of Normandy

Reform and mergers of regions

In 2014, the French parliament passed a law reducing the number of metropolitan regions from 22 to 13 effective 1 January 2016. The law gave interim names for most of the new regions by combining the names of the former regions, e.g. the region composed of Aquitaine, Poitou-Charentes and Limousin was temporarily called ''Aquitaine-Limousin-Poitou-Charentes''. However, the combined region of Upper and Lower Normandy is simply called "Normandy" (''Normandie''). Permanent names were proposed by the new regional councils by 1 July 2016 and new names confirmed by the Conseil d'État by 30 September 2016. The legislation defining the new regions also allowed the Centre region to officially change its name to "Centre-Val de Loire" with effect from January 2015. Two regions, Auvergne-Rhône-Alpes and Bourgogne-Franche-Comté, opted to retain their interim names. File:France proposal regions (2009) map.svg | Édouard Balladur's proposal File:France proposal regions (2014) map.svg | Manuel Valls's proposal A File:France proposal regions (2014) map2.svg| Manuel Valls's proposal B File:France proposal regions (2014) map3.svg| President François Hollande's proposal File:France assembly vote.svg|Regions as instituted by the National Assembly in 2014 Given below is a table of former regions and which new region they became part of.


List of administrative regions


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frp|Ôvèrgne-Rôno-Arpes |Lyon | align="right" | 69,711 |204 | align="center" | 84 |Auvergne
Rhône-Alpes |Laurent Wauquiez (LR) | |- | bgcolor="lightgray" |Metropolitan region |Bourgogne-Franche-Comté
(Burgundy-Free County) | frp|Borgogne-Franche-Comtât |Dijon | align="right" | 47,784 |100 | align="center" | 27 |Burgundy
Franche-Comté |Marie-Guite Dufay (PS) | |- | bgcolor="lightgray" | Metropolitan region |Bretagne
(Brittany) | br|Breizh
Gallo: ''Bertaèyn'' |Rennes | align="right" | 27,208 |83 | align="center" | 53 |''unchanged'' |Loïg Chesnais-Girard (PS) | |- | bgcolor="lightgray" | Metropolitan region |Centre-Val de Loire
(Centre-Loire Valley) | |Orléans | align="right" | 39,151 |77 | align="center" | 24 |Centre |François Bonneau (PS) | |- | bgcolor="lightgray" | Metropolitan region |Corse
(Corsica) | co|Corsica |Ajaccio | align="right" | 8,680 |63 | align="center" | 94 |''unchanged'' |Jean-Guy Talamoni (CL) | |- | bgcolor="lightgray" | Metropolitan region |Grand Est
(Great East) |german: Großer Osten |Strasbourg | align="right" | 57,441 |169 | align="center" | 44 |Alsace
Champagne-Ardenne
Lorraine |Jean Rottner (LR) | |- | bgcolor="lightgray" | Metropolitan region |Hauts-de-France
(Upper France) | |Lille | align="right" | 31,806 |170 | align="center" | 32 |Nord-Pas-de-Calais
Picardy |Xavier Bertrand (LR) | |- | bgcolor="lightgray" | Metropolitan region |Île-de-France
(Island of France) | |Paris | align="right" | 12,011 |209 | align="center" | 11 |''unchanged'' |Valérie Pécresse (LR) | |- | bgcolor="lightgray" | Metropolitan region |Normandie
(Normandy) |Norman: ''Normaundie'' |Rouen | align="right" | 29,907 |102 | align="center" | 28 |Upper Normandy
Lower Normandy |Hervé Morin (LC) | |- | bgcolor="lightgray" | Metropolitan region |Nouvelle-Aquitaine
(New Aquitaine) | oc|Nòva Aquitània / Nava Aquitània / Novela Aquitània
eu|Akitania Berria
|Bordeaux | align="right" | 84,036 |183 | align="center" | 75 |Aquitaine
Limousin
Poitou-Charentes |Alain Rousset (PS) | |- | bgcolor="lightgray" | Metropolitan region |Occitanie (Occitania) | oc|Occitània
ca|Occitània |Toulouse | align="right" | 72,724 |158 | align="center" | 76 |Languedoc-Roussillon
Midi-Pyrénées |Carole Delga (PS) | |- | bgcolor="lightgray" | Metropolitan region |Pays de la Loire
(Loire Countries) | br|Broioù al Liger |Nantes | align="right" | 32,082 |93 | align="center" | 52 |''unchanged'' |Christelle Morançais (LR) | |- | bgcolor="lightgray" | Metropolitan region |Provence-Alpes-Côte d'Azur
(Provence-Alps-Azure Coast) |Provençal: ''Provença-Aups-Còsta d'Azur''
(''Prouvènço-Aup-Costo d'Azur'') |Marseille | align="right" | 31,400 |123 | align="center" | 93 |''unchanged'' |Renaud Muselier (LR) | |- | bgcolor="cyan" |Overseas region |Guadeloupe |Antillean Creole: ''Gwadloup'' |Basse-Terre | align="right" | 1,628 |41 | align="center" | 01 |''unchanged'' |Ary Chalus (GUSR) | |- | bgcolor="cyan" | Overseas region |Guyane
(French Guiana) | |Cayenne | align="right" | 83,534 |51 | align="center" | 03 |''unchanged'' |Rodolphe Alexandre (PSG) | |- | bgcolor="cyan" | Overseas region |La Réunion
(Réunion) |Reunion Creole: ''La Rényon'' |Saint-Denis | align="right" | 2,504 |45 | align="center" | 04 |''unchanged'' |Didier Robert (LR) | |- | bgcolor="cyan" | Overseas region |Martinique |Antillean Creole: ''Matinik'' |Fort-de-France | align="right" | 1,128 |51 | align="center" | 02 |''unchanged'' |Claude Lise (RDM) | |- | bgcolor="cyan" | Overseas region |Mayotte |Shimaore: ''Maore''
Malagasy: ''Mahori'' |Mamoudzou | align="right" | 374 |26 | align="center" | 06 |''unchanged'' |Soibahadine Ibrahim Ramadani (LR) | |- ! ! ! ! !632,734 !1,910 ! ! ! !


Role


Regions lack separate legislative authority and therefore cannot write their own statutory law. They levy their own taxes and, in return, receive a decreasing part of their budget from the central government, which gives them a portion of the taxes it levies. They also have considerable budgets managed by a regional council ''(conseil régional)'' made up of representatives voted into office in regional elections. A region's primary responsibility is to build and furnish high schools. In March 2004, the French central government unveiled a controversial plan to transfer regulation of certain categories of non-teaching school staff to the regional authorities. Critics of this plan contended that tax revenue was insufficient to pay for the resulting costs, and that such measures would increase regional inequalities. In addition, regions have considerable discretionary power over infrastructural spending, e.g., education, public transit, universities and research, and assistance to business owners. This has meant that the heads of wealthy regions such as Île-de-France or Rhône-Alpes can be high-profile positions. Proposals to give regions limited legislative autonomy have met with considerable resistance; others propose transferring certain powers from the departments to their respective regions, leaving the former with limited authority.


Regional control


Number of regions controlled by each coalition since 1986.


Overseas regions


Overseas region (french: Région d'outre-mer) is a recent designation, given to the overseas departments that have similar powers to those of the regions of metropolitan France. As integral parts of the French Republic, they are represented in the National Assembly, Senate and Economic and Social Council, elect a Member of the European Parliament (MEP) and use the euro as their currency. Although these territories have had these political powers since 1982, when France's decentralisation policy dictated that they be given elected regional councils along with other regional powers, the designation ''overseas regions'' dates only to the 2003 constitutional change; indeed, the new wording of the constitution aims to give no precedence to either appellation ''overseas department'' or ''overseas region'', although the second is still virtually unused by French media. The following have overseas region status: * in the Indian Ocean (Africa): ** Mayotte ** Réunion * in the Americas: ** French Guiana in South America ** Guadeloupe in the Antilles (Caribbean) ** Martinique in the Antilles (Caribbean) : ^ Saint Pierre and Miquelon (off Canada, in North America), once an overseas department, was demoted to a territorial collectivity in 1985. France-Constituent-Lands.png Outre-mer en sans Terre Adelie.png


See also


* List of current presidents of the regional councils of France and the Corsican Assembly * Ranked list of French regions * Administrative divisions of France * List of French regions and overseas collectivities by GDP * List of French regions by Human Development Index * List of regions of France by population * Flags of the regions of France * ISO 3166-2:FR General: * Decentralisation in France * Budget of France * Regional councils of France * Administrative divisions of France ;Overseas * Overseas France ** Clipperton Island ** Overseas collectivity *** Overseas country (Outre-mer) ** Overseas department and region ** Overseas territory ** Sui generis collectivity


References





External links


*
Guide to the regions of France

Local websites by region

Will 2010 regional elections lead to political shake-up?
Radio France Internationale in English ; Overseas regions
Ministère de l'Outre-Mer


{{Articles on first-level administrative divisions of European countries France 1 Regions, France Regions Regions Category:Subdivisions of France France