|Possible status||Overseas region (région d'outre-mer) (5)|
|Additional status||Territorial collectivity (collectivité territoriale)|
|Populations||212,645 (Mayotte) – 12,005,077 (Île-de-France)|
|Areas||376 km2 (145 sq mi) (Mayotte) – 84,061 km2 (32,456 sq mi) (Nouvelle-Aquitaine)|
|Government||Regional Government, National Government|
|This article is part of a series on the|
divisions of France
France is divided into 18 administrative regions (French : régions, singular région [ʁeʒjɔ̃] ), of which 13 are located in metropolitan France (i.e. on the European continent), while the other five are overseas regions (not be confused with the "overseas collectivities", which have a semi-autonomous status).
All 13 mainland administrative regions (including Corsica as of 2019 [update] ) are further subdivided into 2 to 13 administrative departments, with the prefect of each region's administrative center'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, the 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".
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.
|Flag||Region||French name||Other local name(s)||Capital||INSEE No.||Derivation or etymology|
|Alsace||Alsace|| Alsatian: Elsàss|
German : Elsass
|Strasbourg||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|| Occitan : Aquitània|
Basque : Akitania
Saintongeais : Aguiéne
|Bordeaux||72||Guyenne and Gascony|
|Auvergne||Auvergne||Occitan : Auvèrnhe / Auvèrnha||Clermont-Ferrand||83||Former province of Auvergne|
|Brittany||Bretagne|| Breton : Breizh|
|Rennes||53||Duchy of Brittany|
|Burgundy||Bourgogne|| Burgundian: Bregogne /Borgoégne|
Arpitan : Borgogne
|Dijon||26||Duchy of Burgundy|
|Centre-Val de Loire||Centre-Val de Loire||Orléans||24||Located in north-central France; straddles the middle of the Loire Valley|
|21||Former province of Champagne|
|Franche-Comté||Franche-Comté|| Franc-Comtois: Fràntche-Comté|
Arpitan : Franche-Comtât
|Besançon||43||Free County of Burgundy (Franche-Comté)|
|Île-de-France||Île-de-France||Paris||11||Province of Île-de-France and parts of the former province of Champagne|
|Languedoc-Roussillon||Languedoc-Roussillon|| Occitan : Lengadòc-Rosselhon|
Catalan : Llenguadoc-Rosselló
|Montpellier||91||Former provinces of Languedoc and Roussillon|
|Limousin||Limousin||Occitan : Lemosin||Limoges||74||Former province of Limousin and parts of Marche, Berry, Auvergne, Poitou and Angoumois|
|Lorraine||Lorraine|| German : Lothringen|
Lorraine Franconian: Lottringe
|Metz||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||25||Western half of former province of Normandy|
|Midi-Pyrénées||Midi-Pyrénées|| Occitan : Miègjorn-Pirenèus|
Occitan : Mieidia-Pirenèus
|Toulouse||73||None; created for Toulouse|
|Nord-Pas-de-Calais||Nord-Pas-de-Calais||Lille||31||Nord and Pas-de-Calais departments|
|Pays de la Loire||Pays de la Loire||Breton : Broioù al Liger||Nantes||52||None; created for Nantes|
|Picardy||Picardie||Amiens||22||Former province of Picardy|
|Poitou-Charentes||Poitou-Charentes|| Occitan : Peitau-Charantas|
Poitevin and Saintongeais : Poetou-Chérentes
|Poitiers||54||Former provinces of Angoumois, Aunis, Poitou and Saintonge|
|Provence-Alpes-Côte d'Azur (PACA)||Provence-Alpes-Côte d'Azur (PACA)|| Provençal: Provença-Aups-Còsta d'Azur|
|Marseille||93||Former province of Provence|
|Rhône-Alpes||Rhône-Alpes|| Arpitan : Rôno-Arpes|
Occitan : Ròse Aups
|Lyon||82||Created for Lyon from Dauphiné and Lyonnais provinces and Savoy|
|Upper Normandy||Haute-Normandie||Norman: Ĥâote-Normaundie||Rouen||23||Eastern half of former province of Normandy|
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.
Regions that merged:
Regions that remained unchanged:
|Type||Region||Other local name(s)||Capital||Area (km2)||INSEE No.||Former regions (until 2016)||President of the corresponding territorial collectivity's legislature||Location|
|Mainland region||Auvergne-Rhône-Alpes|| Occitan : Auvèrnhe-Ròse-Aups|
Arpitan : Ôvèrgne-Rôno-Arpes
|Lyon||69,711||84|| Auvergne |
|Laurent Wauquiez (LR)|
|Mainland region||Bourgogne-Franche-Comté (Burgundy-Franche-Comté)||Arpitan : Borgogne-Franche-Comtât||Dijon||47,784||27|| Burgundy |
|Marie-Guite Dufay (PS)|
|Mainland region||Bretagne (Brittany)|| Breton : Breizh|
|Rennes||27,208||53||unchanged||Loïg Chesnais-Girard (PS)|
|Mainland region||Centre-Val de Loire||Orléans||39,151||24||Centre||François Bonneau (PS)|
|Mainland region||Corse (Corsica)||Corsican : Corsica||Ajaccio||8,680||94||unchanged||Jean-Guy Talamoni (CL)|
|Mainland region||Grand Est (Great East)||German : Großer Osten||Strasbourg||57,441||44|| Alsace |
|Jean Rottner (LR)|
|Mainland region||Hauts-de-France||Lille||31,806||32|| Nord-Pas-de-Calais |
|Xavier Bertrand (LR)|
|Mainland region||Île-de-France||Paris||12,011||11||unchanged||Valérie Pécresse (LR)|
|Mainland region||Normandie (Normandy)||Norman: Normaundie||Rouen||29,907||28|| Upper Normandy |
|Hervé Morin (LC)|
|Mainland region||Nouvelle-Aquitaine (New Aquitaine)|| Occitan : Nòva Aquitània / Nava Aquitània / Novela Aquitània|
Basque : Akitania Berria
|Bordeaux||84,036||75|| Aquitaine |
|Alain Rousset (PS)|
|Mainland region||Occitanie|| Occitan : Occitània|
Catalan : Occitània
|Toulouse||72,724||76|| Languedoc-Roussillon |
|Carole Delga (PS)|
|Mainland region||Pays de la Loire||Breton : Broioù al Liger||Nantes||32,082||52||unchanged||Christelle Morançais (LR)|
|Mainland region||Provence-Alpes-Côte d'Azur|| Provençal: Provença-Aups-Còsta d'Azur|
|Marseille||31,400||93||unchanged||Renaud Muselier (LR)|
|Overseas region||Guadeloupe||Antillean Creole: Gwadloup||Basse-Terre||1,628||01||unchanged||Ary Chalus (GUSR)|
|Overseas region||Guyane (French Guiana)||Cayenne||83,534||03||unchanged||Rodolphe Alexandre (PSG)|
|Overseas region||La Réunion (Réunion)||Reunion Creole: La Rényon||Saint-Denis||2,504||04||unchanged||Didier Robert (LR)|
|Overseas region||Martinique||Antillean Creole: Matinik||Fort-de-France||1,128||02||unchanged||Claude Lise (RDM)|
|Overseas region||Mayotte|| Shimaore: Maore|
|Mamoudzou||374||06||unchanged||Soibahadine Ibrahim Ramadani (LR)|
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.
Number of regions controlled by each coalition since 1986.
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 administrative divisions of France, the department is one of the three levels of government below the national level, between the administrative regions and the commune. Ninety-five departments are in metropolitan France, and five are overseas departments, which are also classified as regions. Departments are further subdivided into 334 arrondissements, themselves divided into cantons; the last two have no autonomy, and are used for the organisation of police, fire departments, and sometimes, elections.
The geography of France consists of a terrain that is mostly flat plains or gently rolling hills in the north and west and mountainous in the south and the east. Metropolitan France has a total size of 551,695 km2 (213,011 sq mi). It is the third largest country in Europe after Russia and Ukraine.
The overseas departments and regions of France are departments of France which are outside metropolitan France, the European part of France. They have nearly the same political status as metropolitan departments, although special constitutional provisions allow them greater autonomy and they are excluded from certain domestic statistics, such as the unemployment rate.
The administrative divisions of France are concerned with the institutional and territorial organization of French territory. These territories are located in many parts of the world. There are many administrative divisions, which may have political, electoral (districts), or administrative objectives. All the inhabited territories are represented in the National Assembly, Senate and Economic and Social Council and their citizens have French citizenship.
Metropolitan France, also known as European France or Mainland France, is the area of the French Republic which is in Europe. It comprises mainland France and Corsica, as well as other islands in the Atlantic Ocean, the English Channel and the Mediterranean Sea.
A territorial collectivity is a chartered subdivision of France, with recognized governing authority. It is the generic name for any subdivision with an elective form of local government and local regulatory authority. The nature of a French territorial collectivity is set forth in Article 72 of the French constitution of 1958, which provides for local autonomy within limits prescribed by law.
The following are ranked lists of French regions.
The French overseas collectivities, like the French regions, are first-order administrative divisions of France, but have a semi-autonomous status. The COMs include some former French overseas colonies and other French overseas entities with a particular status, all of which became COMs by constitutional reform on 28 March 2003. The COMs should not be confused with the overseas regions and overseas departments, which have the same status as Mainland France but are just located outside Europe. As integral parts of France, overseas collectivities are represented in the National Assembly, Senate and Economic and Social Council. Only one COM, Saint Martin, is part of the European Union and can vote to elect members of the European Parliament (MEPs). The Pacific COMs use the CFP franc, a currency pegged to the euro, whereas the Atlantic COMs use the euro directly. As of 31 March 2011, there were five COMs:
A regional council is the elected assembly of a region of France.
The galleries below show flags attributed to the eighteen regions, five overseas collectivities, one sui generis collectivity and one overseas territory of France. Most of them are non-official as regions often use their logos as a flag.
In the NUTS codes of France (FR), the three levels are:
La Coupe de l'Outre-Mer de football was a biennial football competition that was created in 2008. It was designed to have the national football teams of the overseas departments and territories of France play against each other. This competition replaces the Coupe des Clubs Champions de l'Outre-Mer that involved clubs from the territories. The first edition took place between 24 September and 4 October 2008 in Île-de-France.
Overseas France consists of all the French-administered territories outside the European continent, mostly relics of the French colonial empire. These territories have varying legal status and different levels of autonomy, although all have representation in both France's National Assembly and Senate, which together make up the French Parliament. Their citizens have French nationality and vote for the president of France. They have the right to vote in elections to the European Parliament. Overseas France includes island territories in the Atlantic, Pacific and Indian oceans, French Guiana on the South American continent, and several periantarctic islands as well as a claim in Antarctica.
Although the European portion of France is part of the Schengen Area, its overseas departments, collectivities and other territories apply their own visa policies, which have some additional exemptions or restrictions compared to the visa policy of the Schengen Area.