top cx logo
cx logo
Explorearrow down
search icon

Hollande to unveil 12-region France

President expected to unveil plans to cut the number of regions in France

PRESIDENT François Hollande is expected to announce tomorrow that France will soon have just 12 regions.

He will make the announcement in an article or interview with the regional press, it has been reported.

But, there is already opposition to the scheme - even though details have not been finalised, the Journal du Dimanche (JDD) said.

The French territorial divisions - 22 regions, 100-plus departments and 36,000 communes - is often referred to as a “mille-feuille”, after the French dessert.

According to the JDD, a draft territorial reform bill due to be published in mid-June, the 22 regions will be cut to 12 ‘super regions’.

It has been reported that the bill will also include provisions to postpone next year’s regional elections until after the map of France has been redrawn.

Recently, however, the Socialist Party Presidents of Poitou-Charentes and Pays de la Loire and have expressed an interest uniting their departments in the same region - while the draft plan puts Poitou-Charentes with Aquitaine.

Under the plans, the Pays de la Loire are set to become part of an expanded Brittany, which historically included the old Loire-Atlantique.

Last month, Prime Minister Manuel Valls said cutting the number of regions will save France up to €25bn - but Alain Rousset, President of the Association of French Regions, said: “What is needed is not a reform on the size and borders of regions, but a true act of decentralization. Otherwise, nothing will change, and it will cost even more.”

The proposal has stirred up the traditional attachment of French people to their regions, and sometimes strong feelings against sharing the same authorities as their neighbours.

In Alsace, 61 per cent of respondents to a poll said they don't want to join with neighbouring Lorraine, which has suffered from the deep decline of its mining and metallurgy industry.

A Facebook group against an Alsace-Lorraine merger has gathered more than 10,000 people.

And polls also suggest that 68% of the French believe the measure to be a necessity - but 77% reject the disappearance of their own region.

Resident or second-home owner in France?
Benefit from our daily digest of headlines and how-to's to help you make the most of life in France
By joining the newsletter, you agree to our Terms & Conditions and Privacy Policy
See more popular articles
The Connexion Help Guides
featured helpguide
Visa and residency cards for France*
Featured Help Guide
- Visas and residency cards (cartes de séjour) for France help guide - Understand when visas and residency cards are required to move to France or come for an extended stay - Applies to Britons (post-Brexit) and to all other non-EU/non-EEA/Swiss nationalities - Useful to anyone considering a move to France, whether for work or otherwise, or wanting to spend more than three months at their French second home
Get news, views and information from France