government of France


The Government of France (: ''Gouvernement français''), officially the Government of the French Republic (''Gouvernement de la République française'' ), exercises in . It is composed of the , who is the , as well as both senior and junior . The , the main executive organ of the Government, was established in the in 1958. Its members meet weekly at the in . The meetings are presided over by the , the , although the officeholder is not a member of the Government. The Government's most senior ministers are titled as ministers of state (''ministres d'État''), followed in protocol order by ministers (''ministres''), ministers delegate (''ministres délégués''), whereas junior ministers are titled as secretaries of state (''secrétaires d'État''). All members of the Government, who are appointed by the President following the recommendation of the Prime Minister, are responsible to the , the of the . Cases of ministerial misconduct are tried before the '.

Composition and formation

All members of the French government are appointed by the on the advice of the prime minister. Members of the government are ranked in a precise order, which is established at the time of government formation. In this hierarchy, the is the head of government. He is appointed by the president of the Republic. While the president is constitutionally free to appoint whomever he likes, in practice, he must nominate a candidate that reflects the will of the majority of the , as the government is responsible to the . After being nominated to lead a government, the prime minister nominee must propose a list of ministers to the president. The president can either accept or reject these proposed ministers. Ministers are ranked by importance: * (french: ministres d'État) are senior ministers and are members of the Council of Ministers. It is an honorary rank, granted to some Ministers as a sign of prestige. *Ministers (french: Ministres) are senior ministers and are members of the Council of Ministers. They lead government . * (french: secrétaires d'État) are junior ministers. This is the lowest rank in the French ministerial hierarchy. Secretaries work directly under a minister, or sometimes directly under the prime minister. While the Council of Ministers does not include secretaries of state as members, secretaries may attend meetings of the Council if their portfolio is up for discussion.


According to the , the government directs and decides the policy of the nation. In practice, the government writes to be introduced to , and also writes and issues . All political decisions made by the government must be registered in the .

Council of Ministers

The Council of Ministers (french: Conseil des ministres) is established by the . It is composed only of the senior ministers, though some secretaries of state may attend Council meetings. The Council of Ministers is chaired by the president, unlike the government, but is still led by the prime Minister, who was officially titled as the (french: président du Conseil des ministres) during the and . All bills and some decrees must be approved by the Council of Ministers. Furthermore, it is the Council of Ministers that defines the collective political and policy direction of the government, and takes practical steps to implement that direction. In addition to writing and implementing policy, the government is responsible for national defense, and directs the actions of the . The workings of the government of France are based on the principle of . Meetings of the Council of Ministers take place every Wednesday morning at the . They are presided over by the president of the Republic, who promotes solidarity and collegiality amongst government ministers. These meetings follow a set format. In the first part of a meeting, the Council deliberates over general interest bills, ordinances, and decrees. In the second part, the Council discusses individual decisions by each minister regarding the appointment of senior . In the third part, usually, either one minister will give a presentation about some reform or project that they are directing, or the president will ask for advice on some subject from the ministers. In addition, the minister of foreign affairs provides the Council with weekly updates on important international issues.


Most government work, however, is done elsewhere. Much of it is done by each individual ministry, under the direction of the minister responsible for that ministry. Ministers each have their own staff, called a "ministerial cabinet" (french: Cabinet ministériel). Each ministerial cabinet consists of around ten to twenty members, who are political appointees. Cabinet members assist the minister in running a ministry. Members of ministerial cabinets are powerful figures within the government and work in both the political and administrative spheres. The hierarchy in each ministerial cabinet is determined by the Minister. Working groups consisting of representatives from several ministries are commonplace. It is the duty of the prime minister to oversee these inter-ministry meetings and to ensure that government work is done effectively and efficiently.


The government is responsible for the economic and financial policy of the , must authorize all expenditures made by each ministry, and also manage all revenue. Expenditures are made through what is called a "finance law" (french: Loi des Finances), which is equivalent to an . Each minister must prepare a list of requests for funds annually, and submit it to the Budget Ministry. This ministry decides whether to grant or deny requests for funding by ministers. The ministry also calculates the state budget for the coming year. The parliament must vote on all applications of finance law.

Separation of powers

Members of the French Government cannot occupy any position of occupational or trade leadership at the national level, any public employment, or any professional activity. These restrictions are in place to alleviate external pressure and influence on ministers, and to enable them to focus on their governmental work. Despite these restrictions, members of the government are , such as those of city mayor or regional councilor. Whilst the Constitution of the French Republic does not prohibit ministers from being the leader of a political party, it is customary that ministers should not occupy such a post. The government is responsible for the . In particular, the government must assume responsibility for its actions before the , and the National Assembly can dismiss the government with a . The government cannot function during the tenure of acting (interim) president, as that position is granted either to the or the Prime Minister, compromising . If the government decides to launch an armed operation with a duration of longer than four months, it must first consult parliament and request an authorization. The Prime Minister may convene parliament for extraordinary sessions, or add additional sitting days to the legislative calendar.

Current government


The names of ministries change often in France. This is a list of current ministries: * * * * * * * * * * * * * * *


External links

* {{DEFAULTSORT:Council Of Ministers Of France
France France (), officially the French Republic (french: link=no, République française), is a country primarily located in Western Europe, consisting of metropolitan France and Overseas France, several overseas regions and territories. The metro ...