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Parliamentary system

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

World's states coloured by systems of government:
Parliamentary systems: Head of government is elected or nominated by and accountable to the legislature
  Constitutional monarchy with a ceremonial monarch
  Parliamentary republic with a ceremonial president

Presidential system: Head of government (president) is popularly elected and independent of the legislature
  Presidential republic

Hybrid systems:
  Semi-presidential republic: Executive president is independent of the legislature; head of government is appointed by the president and is accountable to the legislature
  Assembly-independent republic: Head of government (president or directory) is elected by the legislature, but is not accountable to it

  Semi-constitutional monarchy: Monarch holds significant executive or legislative power
  Absolute monarchy: Monarch has unlimited power
  One-party state: Power is constitutionally linked to a single political party
  Military junta: Committee of military leaders controls the government; constitutional provisions are suspended
  Provisional government: No constitutionally defined basis to current regime
  Dependent territories and places without governments

Note: this chart represent de jure systems of government, not the de facto degree of democracy.[citation needed]

A parliamentary system, or parliamentary democracy, is a system of democratic government where the head of government (who may also be the head of state) derives their democratic legitimacy from their ability to command the support ("confidence") of the legislature, typically a parliament, to which they are accountable.

In a parliamentary system, the head of state and head of government are usually two separate positions, with the head of state serving as a ceremonial figurehead with little if any power, while all of the real political power is vested in the head of government. This is in contrast to a presidential system, which features a president who is usually both the head of state and the head of government and, most importantly, does not derive their legitimacy from the legislature.

Countries with parliamentary systems may be constitutional monarchies, where a monarch is the head of state while the head of government is almost always a member of parliament, or parliamentary republics, where a mostly ceremonial president is the head of state while the head of government is regularly from the legislature. In a few parliamentary republics, among some others, the head of government is also head of state, but is elected by and is answerable to parliament. In bicameral parliaments, the head of government is generally, though not always, a member of the lower house.

Parliamentarianism is the dominant form of government in Europe, with 32 of its 50 sovereign states being parliamentarian. It is also common across the Caribbean, being the form of government of 10 of its 13 island states, and in Oceania. Elsewhere in the world, parliamentary governments are less common, but they are distributed through all continents, most often in former colonies of the British Empire that subscribe to a particular brand of parliamentarianism known as the Westminster system.

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Since ancient times, when societies were tribal, there were councils or a headman whose decisions were assessed by village elders. Eventually, these councils slowly evolved into the modern parliamentary system.

The first parliaments date back to Europe in the Middle Ages: specifically in 1188 Alfonso IX, King of Leon (Spain) convened the three states in the Cortes of León.[1][2] The Corts of Catalonia were the first parliament of Europe that officially obtained the power to pass legislation, apart from the custom.[3] An early example of parliamentary government developed in today's Netherlands and Belgium during the Dutch revolt (1581), when the sovereign, legislative and executive powers were taken over by the States General of the Netherlands from the monarch, King Philip II of Spain.[citation needed] The modern concept of parliamentary government emerged in the Kingdom of Great Britain between 1707 and 1800 and its contemporary, the Parliamentary System in Sweden between 1721 and 1772.

In England, Simon de Montfort is remembered as one of the fathers of representative government for convening two famous parliaments.[4][5][6] The first, in 1258, stripped the king of unlimited authority and the second, in 1265, included ordinary citizens from the towns.[7] Later, in the 17th century, the Parliament of England pioneered some of the ideas and systems of liberal democracy culminating in the Glorious Revolution and passage of the Bill of Rights 1689.[8][9]

In the Kingdom of Great Britain, the monarch, in theory, chaired the cabinet and chose ministers. In practice, King George I's inability to speak English led to the responsibility for chairing cabinet to go to the leading minister, literally the prime or first minister, Robert Walpole. The gradual democratisation of parliament with the broadening of the voting franchise increased parliament's role in controlling government, and in deciding whom the king could ask to form a government. By the 19th century, the Great Reform Act of 1832 led to parliamentary dominance, with its choice invariably deciding who was prime minister and the complexion of the government.[10][11]

Other countries gradually adopted what came to be called the Westminster system of government,[12] with an executive answerable to the lower house of a bicameral parliament, and exercising, in the name of the head of state, powers nominally vested in the head of state – hence the use of phrases such as Her Majesty's government (in constitutional monarchies) or His Excellency's government (in parliamentary republics).[13] Such a system became particularly prevalent in older British dominions, many of which had their constitutions enacted by the British parliament; such as Australia, New Zealand, Canada, the Irish Free State and the Union of South Africa.[14][15][16] Some of these parliaments were reformed from, or were initially developed as distinct from their original British model: the Australian Senate, for instance, has since its inception more closely reflected the US Senate than the British House of Lords; whereas since 1950 there is no upper house in New Zealand. Many of these countries such as Trinidad and Tobago and Barbados have severed institutional ties to Great Britain by becoming republics with their own ceremonial Presidents, but retain the Westminster system of government. The idea of parliamentary accountability and responsible government spread with these systems.[17]

Democracy and parliamentarianism became increasingly prevalent in Europe in the years after World War I, partially imposed by the democratic victors,[how?] the United States, Great Britain and France, on the defeated countries and their successors, notably Germany's Weimar Republic and the First Austrian Republic. Nineteenth-century urbanisation, the Industrial Revolution and modernism had already made the parliamentarist demands of the Radicals and the emerging movement of social democrats increasingly impossible to ignore; these forces came to dominate many states that transitioned to parliamentarism, particularly in the French Third Republic where the Radical Party and its centre-left allies dominated the government for several decades. However, the rise of Fascism in the 1930s put an end to parliamentary democracy in Italy and Germany, among others.

After the Second World War, the defeated fascist Axis powers were occupied by the victorious Allies. In those countries occupied by the Allied democracies (the United States, United Kingdom, and France) parliamentary constitutions were implemented, resulting in the parliamentary constitutions of Italy and West Germany (now all of Germany) and the 1947 Constitution of Japan. The experiences of the war in the occupied nations where the legitimate democratic governments were allowed to return strengthened the public commitment to parliamentary principles; in Denmark, a new constitution was written in 1953, while a long and acrimonious debate in Norway resulted in no changes being made to that country's strongly entrenched democratic constitution.


A parliamentary system may be either bicameral, with two chambers of parliament (or houses) or unicameral, with just one parliamentary chamber. A bicameral parliament usually consists of a directly elected lower house with the power to determine the executive government, and an upper house which may be appointed or elected through a different mechanism from the lower house.


Scholars of democracy such as Arend Lijphart distinguish two types of parliamentary democracies: the Westminster and Consensus systems.[18]

Westminster system

The Palace of Westminster in London, United Kingdom. The Westminster system originates from the British Houses of Parliament.

Consensus system

The Reichstag Building in Berlin, Germany. The Consensus system is used in most Western European countries.
  • The Western European parliamentary model (e.g., Spain, Germany) tends to have a more consensual debating system and usually has semi-circular debating chambers. Consensus systems have more of a tendency to use proportional representation with open party lists than the Westminster Model legislatures. The committees of these Parliaments tend to be more important than the plenary chamber. Most Western European countries do not employ strict monism, and allow extra-parliamentary ministers as a matter of course. The Netherlands, Slovakia and Sweden outright implement the principle of dualism as a form of separation of powers, where Members of Parliament have to resign their place in Parliament upon being appointed (or elected) minister.

Election of the head of government

Implementations of the parliamentary system can also differ as to how the prime minister and government are appointed and whether the government needs the explicit approval of the parliament, rather than just the absence of its disapproval. Some countries such as India also require the prime minister to be a member of the legislature, though in other countries this only exists as a convention.

  • The head of state appoints a prime minister who will likely have majority support in parliament. While in the majority of cases prime ministers in the Westminster system are the leaders of the largest party in parliament, technically the appointment of the prime minister is a prerogative exercised by the head of state (be it the monarch, the governor-general, or the president). This system is used in:
  • The head of state appoints a prime minister who must gain a vote of confidence within a set time. This system is used in:
  • The head of state appoints the leader of the political party holding a plurality of seats in parliament as prime minister. For example, in Greece, if no party has a majority, the leader of the party with a plurality of seats is given an exploratory mandate to receive the confidence of the parliament within three days. If said leader fails to obtain the confidence of parliament, then the leader of the second-largest party is given the exploratory mandate. If that fails, then the leader of the third-largest political party is given the exploratory mandate, and so on. This system is used in:
  • The head of state nominates a candidate for prime minister who is then submitted to parliament for approval before appointment. Example: Spain, where the King sends a proposal to the Congress of Deputies for approval. Also, Germany where under the German Basic Law (constitution) the Bundestag votes on a candidate nominated by the federal president. In these cases,[citation needed] parliament can choose another candidate who then would be appointed by the head of state. This system is used in:
  • A public officeholder (other than the head of state or their representative) nominates a candidate, who, if approved by parliament, is appointed as prime minister. Example: Under the Swedish Instrument of Government (1974), the power to appoint someone to form a government has been moved from the monarch to the Speaker of Parliament and the parliament itself. The speaker nominates a candidate, who is then elected to prime minister (statsminister) by the parliament if an absolute majority of the members of parliament does not vote against the candidate (i.e. they can be elected even if more members of parliament vote No than Yes). This system is used in:
  • Direct election by popular vote. Example: Israel, 1996–2001, where the prime minister was elected in a general election, with no regard to political affiliation, and whose procedure can also be described as of a semi-parliamentary system.[23][24] This system was used in:

Power of dissolution and call for election

Furthermore, there are variations as to what conditions exist (if any) for the government to have the right to dissolve the parliament:

  • In some countries, especially those operating under a Westminster system, such as the United Kingdom, Denmark, Malaysia, Australia and New Zealand, the prime minister has the de facto power to call an election, at will. In Spain, the prime minister is the only person with the de jure power to call an election, granted by Article 115 of the Constitution.
  • In Israel, parliament may vote to dissolve itself in order to call an election, or the prime minister may call a snap election with presidential consent if his government is deadlocked. A non-passage of the budget automatically calls a snap election.
  • Other countries only permit an election to be called in the event of a vote of no confidence against the government, a supermajority vote in favour of an early election or a prolonged deadlock in parliament. These requirements can still be circumvented. For example, in Germany in 2005, Gerhard Schröder deliberately allowed his government to lose a confidence motion, in order to call an early election.
  • In Sweden, the government may call a snap election at will, but the newly elected Riksdag is only elected to fill out the previous Riksdag's term. The last time this option was used was in 1958.
  • In Greece, a general election is called if the Parliament fails to elect a new head of state when his or her term ends. In January 2015, this constitutional provision was exploited by Syriza to trigger a snap election, win it and oust rivals New Democracy from power.
  • In Italy the government has no power to call a snap election. A snap election can only be called by the head of state, following a consultation with the presidents of both houses of parliament.
  • Norway is unique among parliamentary systems in that the Storting always serves the whole of its four-year term.
  • In Australia, under certain, unique conditions, the prime minister can request the Governor General to call for a double dissolution, whereby all rather than only half of the Senate, is dissolved – in effect electing all of the Parliament simultaneously.

The parliamentary system can be contrasted with a presidential system which operates under a stricter separation of powers, whereby the executive does not form part of—nor is appointed by—the parliamentary or legislative body. In such a system, parliaments or congresses do not select or dismiss heads of government, and governments cannot request an early dissolution as may be the case for parliaments (although the parliament may still be able to dissolve itself, as in the case of Cyprus). There also exists the semi-presidential system that draws on both presidential systems and parliamentary systems by combining a powerful president with an executive responsible to parliament: for example, the French Fifth Republic.

Parliamentarianism may also apply to regional and local governments. An example is Oslo which has an executive council (Byråd) as a part of the parliamentary system. The devolved nations of the United Kingdom are also parliamentary and which, as with the UK Parliament, may hold early elections – this has only occurred with regards to the Northern Ireland Assembly in 2017 and 2022.

Anti-defection law

A few parliamentary democratic nations such as India, Pakistan and Bangladesh have enacted laws that prohibit floor crossing or switching parties after the election. Under these laws, elected representatives will lose their seat in the parliament if they go against their party in votes.[25][26][27]

In the UK parliament, a member is free to cross over to a different party. In Canada and Australia, there are no restraints on legislators switching sides.[28] In New Zealand, waka-jumping legislation provides that MPs who switch parties or are expelled from their party may be expelled from Parliament at the request of their former party's leader.

Parliamentary sovereignty

A few parliamentary democracies such as the United Kingdom and New Zealand have weak or non-existent checks on the legislative power of their Parliaments,[29][30] where any newly approved Act shall take precedence over all prior Acts. All laws are equally unentrenched, wherein judicial review may not outright annul nor amend them, as frequently occurs in other parliamentary systems like Germany. Whilst the head of state for both nations (Monarch, and or Governor General) has the de jure power to withhold assent to any bill passed by their Parliament, this check has not been exercised in Britain since the 1708 Scottish Militia Bill.

Whilst both the UK and New Zealand have some Acts or parliamentary rules establishing supermajorities or additional legislative procedures for certain legislation, such as previously with the Fixed-term Parliaments Act 2011 (FTPA), these can be bypassed through the enactment of another that amends or ignores these supermajorities away, such as with the Early Parliamentary General Election Act 2019 – bypassing the 2/3rd supermajority required for an early dissolution under the FTPA[31] -, which enabled the early dissolution for the 2019 general election.


Parliamentarism metrics allow a quantitative comparison of the strength of parliamentary systems for individual countries. One parliamentarism metric is the Parliamentary Powers Index.[32]



Parliamentary systems like that found in the United Kingdom are widely considered to be more flexible, allowing a rapid change in legislation and policy as long as there is a stable majority or coalition in parliament, allowing the government to have 'few legal limits on what it can do'[33] When combined with first-past-the-post voting, this system produces the classic "Westminster model" with the twin virtues of strong but responsive party government.[34] This electoral system providing a strong majority in the House of Commons, paired with the fused power system results in a particularly powerful government able to provide change and 'innovate'.[33]

Scrutiny and accountability

The United Kingdom's fused power system is often noted to be advantageous with regard to accountability. The centralised government allows for more transparency as to where decisions originate from, this contrasts with the American system with Treasury Secretary C. Douglas Dillon saying "the president blames Congress, the Congress blames the president, and the public remains confused and disgusted with government in Washington".[35] Furthermore, ministers of the U.K. cabinet are subject to weekly Question Periods in which their actions/policies are scrutinised; no such regular check on the government exists in the U.S. system.

Distribution of power

A 2001 World Bank study found that parliamentary systems are associated with less corruption.[36]

Calling of elections

In his 1867 book The English Constitution, Walter Bagehot praised parliamentary governments for producing serious debates, for allowing for a change in power without an election, and for allowing elections at any time. Bagehot considered fixed-term elections such as the four-year election rule for presidents of the United States to be unnatural, as it can potentially allow a president who has disappointed the public with a dismal performance in the second year of his term to continue on until the end of his four-year term. Under a parliamentary system, a prime minister that has lost support in the middle of his term can be easily replaced by his own peers with a more popular alternative, as the Conservative Party in the UK did with successive prime ministers David Cameron, Theresa May, Boris Johnson, Liz Truss, and Rishi Sunak.

Although Bagehot praised parliamentary governments for allowing an election to take place at any time, the lack of a definite election calendar can be abused. Under some systems, such as the British, a ruling party can schedule elections when it believes that it is likely to retain power, and so avoid elections at times of unpopularity. (From 2011, election timing in the UK was partially fixed under the Fixed-term Parliaments Act 2011, which was repealed by the Dissolution and Calling of Parliament Act 2022.) Thus, by a shrewd timing of elections, in a parliamentary system, a party can extend its rule for longer than is feasible in a presidential system. This problem can be alleviated somewhat by setting fixed dates for parliamentary elections, as is the case in several of Australia's state parliaments. In other systems, such as the Dutch and the Belgian, the ruling party or coalition has some flexibility in determining the election date. Conversely, flexibility in the timing of parliamentary elections can avoid periods of legislative gridlock that can occur in a fixed period presidential system. In any case, voters ultimately have the power to choose whether to vote for the ruling party or someone else.


Incomplete separation of power

According to Arturo Fontaine, parliamentary systems in Europe have yielded very powerful heads of government which is rather what is often criticized about presidential systems. Fontaine compares United Kingdom's Margaret Thatcher to the United States' Ronald Reagan noting the former head of government was much more powerful despite governing under a parliamentary system.[37] The rise to power of Viktor Orbán in Hungary has been claimed to show how parliamentary systems can be subverted.[37] The situation in Hungary was according to Fontaine allowed by the deficient separation of powers that characterises parliamentary and semi-presidential systems.[37] Once Orbán's party got two-thirds of the seats in Parliament in a single election, a supermajority large enough to amend the Hungarian constitution, there was no institution that was able to balance the concentration of power.[37] In a presidential system it would require at least two separate elections to create the same effect; the presidential election, and the legislative election, and that the president's party has the legislative supermajority required for constitutional amendments. Safeguards against this situation implementable in both systems include the establishment of an upper house or a requirement for external ratification of constitutional amendments such as a referendum. Fontaine also notes as a warning example of the flaws of parliamentary systems that if the United States had a parliamentary system, Donald Trump, as head of government, could have dissolved the United States Congress.[37]

Legislative flip-flopping

The ability for strong parliamentary governments to push legislation through with the ease of fused power systems such as in the United Kingdom, whilst positive in allowing rapid adaptation when necessary e.g. the nationalisation of services during the world wars, in the opinion of some commentators does have its drawbacks. For instance, the flip-flopping of legislation back and forth as the majority in parliament changed between the Conservatives and Labour over the period 1940–1980, contesting over the nationalisation and privatisation of the British Steel Industry resulted in major instability for the British steel sector.[33]

Political fragmentation

In R. Kent Weaver's book Are Parliamentary Systems Better?, he writes that an advantage of presidential systems is their ability to allow and accommodate more diverse viewpoints. He states that because "legislators are not compelled to vote against their constituents on matters of local concern, parties can serve as organizational and roll-call cuing vehicles without forcing out dissidents."[33]

Democratic unaccountability

All current parliamentary democracies see the indirect election or appointment of their head of government. As a result, the electorate has limited power to remove or install the person or party wielding the most power. Although strategic voting may enable the party of the prime minister to be removed or empowered, this can be at the expense of voters first preferences in the many parliamentary systems utilising first past the post, or having no effect in dislodging those parties who consistently form part of a coalition government, as with the current Dutch prime minister Mark Rutte and his party the VVD's 4 terms in office, despite their peak support reaching only 26.6% in 2012.[38]



Country Connection between the legislature and the executive
 Botswana Parliament of Botswana elects the President who appoints the Cabinet
 Ethiopia Federal Parliamentary Assembly appoints the Council of Ministers
 Lesotho National Assembly of Lesotho determines the Prime Minister of Lesotho
 Mauritius National Assembly appoints the Cabinet of Mauritius
 Somalia Federal Parliament of Somalia elects the President who appoints the Prime Minister
 South Africa Parliament of South Africa elects the President who appoints the Cabinet


House of Representatives of Belize
Parliament of Canada
Country Connection between the legislature and the executive
 Antigua and Barbuda Leader of the political party that has the support of a majority in the House of Representatives of Antigua and Barbuda is appointed Prime Minister of Antigua and Barbuda by the Governor-General of Antigua and Barbuda, who then appoints the Cabinet of Antigua and Barbuda on the advice of the Prime Minister
 The Bahamas Leader of the political party that has the support of a majority in the House of Assembly of the Bahamas is appointed Prime Minister of the Bahamas by the Governor-General of the Bahamas, who then appoints the Cabinet of the Bahamas on the advice of the Prime Minister
 Barbados Leader of the political party that has the support of a majority in the House of Assembly of Barbados is appointed Prime Minister of Barbados by the President of Barbados, who then appoints the Cabinet of Barbados on the advice of the Prime Minister
 Belize Leader of the political party that has the support of a majority in the House of Representatives of Belize is appointed Prime Minister of Belize by the Governor-General of Belize, who then appoints the Cabinet of Belize on the advice of the Prime Minister
 Canada Leader of the political party that has the support of a majority in the House of Commons of Canada is appointed Prime Minister of Canada by the Governor General of Canada, who then appoints the Cabinet of Canada on the advice of the Prime Minister
 Dominica Parliament approves the Cabinet of Dominica
 Grenada Leader of the political party that has the support of a majority in the House of Representatives of Grenada is appointed Prime Minister of Grenada by the Governor-General of Grenada, who then appoints the Cabinet of Grenada on the advice of the Prime Minister
 Jamaica Leader of the political party that has the support of a majority in the House of Representatives of Jamaica is appointed Prime Minister of Jamaica by the Governor-General of Jamaica, who then appoints the Cabinet of Jamaica on the advice of the Prime Minister
 Saint Kitts and Nevis Leader of the political party that has the support of a majority in the National Assembly of Saint Kitts and Nevis is appointed Prime Minister of Saint Kitts and Nevis by the Governor-General of Saint Kitts and Nevis, who then appoints the Cabinet of Saint Kitts and Nevis on the advice of the Prime Minister
 Saint Lucia Leader of the political party that has the support of a majority in the House of Assembly of Saint Lucia is appointed Prime Minister of Saint Lucia by the Governor-General of Saint Lucia, who then appoints the Cabinet of Saint Lucia on the advice of the Prime Minister
 Saint Vincent and the Grenadines Leader of the political party that has the support of a majority in the House of Assembly of Saint Vincent and the Grenadines is appointed Prime Minister of Saint Vincent and the Grenadines by the Governor-General of Saint Vincent and the Grenadines, who then appoints the Cabinet of Saint Vincent and the Grenadines on the advice of the Prime Minister
 Suriname National Assembly elects the President, who appoints the Cabinet of Suriname
 Trinidad and Tobago Leader of the political party that has the support of a majority in the House of Representatives of Trinidad and Tobago is appointed Prime Minister of Trinidad and Tobago by the President of Trinidad and Tobago, who then appoints the Cabinet of Trinidad and Tobago on the advice of the Prime Minister


National Assembly of Armenia
Jatiya Sangsad Bhaban, parliament building of Bangladesh
Sansad Bhavan, parliament building of India
Council of Representatives of Iraq
Knesset of Israel in Jerusalem
Parliament of Malaysia
Country Connection between the legislature and the executive
 Armenia National Assembly appoints and (no sooner than one year) can dismiss through the constructive vote of no confidence the Government of Armenia
 Bangladesh Jatiya Sangsad approves the Cabinet of Bangladesh
 Bhutan Parliament of Bhutan approves the Lhengye Zhungtshog
 Cambodia Parliament of Cambodia approves the Council of Ministers
 Republic of China (Taiwan)
  • 1947 Constitution: The Legislative Yuan approves the Executive Yuan in which the premier is nominated and appointed by the president, with the consent of the Legislative Yuan.
  • 2005 Amendments: The Legislative Yuan approves the Executive Yuan in which the premier is appointed by the president. The Legislative Yuan may vote for motion of no confidence.
 Georgia The Prime Minister is nominated by a political party that has secured the best results in the parliamentary election. The nominee must be approved by the Parliament and then formally appointed by the President. The Prime Minister then appoints the Cabinet of Ministers.
 India President of India appoints the leader of the political party or alliance that has the support of a majority in the Lok Sabha as Prime Minister of India, who then forms the Union Council of Ministers
 Iraq Council of Representatives approves the Cabinet of Iraq
 Israel A member of the Knesset that has the best chance of forming a coalition is given a mandate to do so by the President of Israel. On success, they are appointed as the Prime Minister of Israel. The Prime Minister then appoints the Cabinet of Israel.
 Japan National Diet nominates the Prime Minister who appoints the Cabinet of Japan
 Kuwait National Assembly approves the Crown Prince who appoints the Prime Minister who appoints the Cabinet of Kuwait
 Laos National Assembly elects the President who nominates the Prime Minister
 Lebanon Maronite Christian president is elected by the Parliament of Lebanon. He appoints the Prime Minister (a Sunni Muslim) and the cabinet. The Parliament thereafter approves the Cabinet of Lebanon through a vote of confidence (a simple majority).
 Malaysia Leader of the political party that has the support of a majority in the Dewan Rakyat is appointed Prime Minister of Malaysia by the Yang di-Pertuan Agong, who then appoints the Cabinet of Malaysia on the advice of the Prime Minister.
 Myanmar Assembly of the Union, by an electoral college, elects the President who forms the Cabinet of Myanmar. However, Myanmar is currently under the rule of the State Administration Council, which assumed power by coup d'état
   Nepal Parliament of Nepal elects the Prime Minister who, by turn, appoints the Cabinet of Nepal
 Pakistan Parliament of Pakistan appoints the Cabinet of Pakistan
 Singapore Leader of the political party that has the support of a majority in the Parliament of Singapore is appointed Prime Minister of Singapore by the President of Singapore, who then appoints the Cabinet of Singapore on the advice of the Prime Minister.
 Thailand The Monarch appoints the MP or individual nominated by in the House of Representatives (usually the leader of the largest party or coalition) as Prime Minister, who forms the Cabinet of Thailand.
 Vietnam National Assembly elects the President and Prime Minister who forms the Cabinet.


The administrative building of the Albanian Parliament
The Congress of Deputies, the lower chamber of Spanish Parliament
Country Connection between the legislature and the executive
 Albania Parliament of Albania approves the Cabinet of Albania
 Austria In theory, chancellor and ministers are appointed by the President. As a practical matter, they are unable to govern without the support (or at least toleration) of a majority in the National Council. The cabinet is politically answerable to the National Council and can be dismissed by the National Council through a motion of no confidence.
 Belgium Federal Parliament approves the Cabinet of Belgium
 Bulgaria National Assembly appoints the Council of Ministers of Bulgaria
 Croatia Croatian Parliament approves President of Government and the Cabinet nominated by him/her.
 Czech Republic President of the Czech Republic appoints usually the leader of the largest party or coalition in the Chamber of Deputies of the Parliament as Prime Minister, who forms the Cabinet. The Prime Minister must gain a vote of confidence by the Chamber of Deputies.
 Denmark The Monarch appoints, based on recommendations from the leaders of the parties in Folketinget, the cabinet leader who is most likely to successfully assemble a Cabinet which will not be disapproved by a majority in Folketinget.
 Estonia Riigikogu elects the Prime Minister candidate nominated by the President of the Republic (normally this candidate is the leader of the parliamentary coalition of parties). The Government of the Republic of Estonia is later appointed by the President of the Republic under proposal of the approved Prime Minister candidate. The Riigikogu may remove the Prime Minister and any other member of the government through a motion of no confidence.
 Finland Parliament of Finland appoints the Cabinet of Finland
 Germany Bundestag elects the Federal Chancellor (after nomination from the President of Germany), who forms the Cabinet
 Greece Hellenic Parliament approves the Cabinet of Greece
 Hungary National Assembly approves the Cabinet of Hungary
 Iceland The President of Iceland appoints and discharges the Cabinet of Iceland. Ministers can not even resign without being discharged by presidential decree.
 Ireland Dáil Éireann nominates the Taoiseach, who is then appointed by the President of Ireland
 Italy Italian Parliament grants and revokes its confidence in the Cabinet of Italy, appointed by the President of Italy
 Kosovo Assembly of Kosovo appoints the Government of Kosovo
 Latvia Saeima appoints the Cabinet of Ministers of the Republic of Latvia
 Luxembourg Chamber of Deputies appoints the Cabinet of Luxembourg
 Malta House of Representatives appoints the Cabinet of Malta
 Moldova Parliament of Moldova appoints the Cabinet of Moldova
 Montenegro Parliament of Montenegro appoints the Government of Montenegro
 Netherlands Second Chamber of the States-General can dismiss the Cabinet of the Netherlands through a motion of no confidence
 North Macedonia Assembly approves the Government of North Macedonia
 Norway The Monarch appoints the MP leading the largest party or coalition in Stortinget as Prime Minister, who forms the Cabinet
 Poland The President of Poland and the governing party in the Sejm are elected by popular vote. The President appoints the Prime Minister from the largest party or coalition as the head of government. However, the Polish system is often regarded as de facto semi-presidential – the President of Poland has the power to veto legislation passed by parliament and can dissolve the parliament under certain conditions.[39][40][41] The Constitution of Poland defines the country's system as de jure parliamentary republic.
 Portugal After the elections for the Assembly of the Republic or the resignation of the previous government, the president listens to the parties in the Assembly of the Republic and invites someone to form a government, usually the leader of the biggest party. Then the president swears in the prime minister and the Government.
 San Marino
 Serbia National Assembly appoints the Government of Serbia
 Slovakia National Council approves the Government of Slovakia
 Slovenia National Assembly appoints the Government of Slovenia
 Spain The Congress of Deputies elects the President of the Government, who forms the Cabinet
 Sweden The Riksdag elects the Prime Minister, who in turn appoints the other members of the Government
 United Kingdom The Leader, almost invariably a Member of Parliament (MP) and of the political party which commands or is likely to command the confidence of a majority of the House of Commons, is appointed Prime Minister by the British sovereign, who then appoints members of the Cabinet on the nomination and advice of the Prime Minister.


Parliament of Australia
Parliament of Vanuatu
Country Connection between the legislature and the executive
 Australia Leader of the political party that has the support of a majority in the Australian House of Representatives is appointed Prime Minister of Australia by the Governor-General of Australia, who then appoints the Cabinet of Australia on the advice of the Prime Minister
 New Zealand Leader of the political party that has the support of a majority in the New Zealand House of Representatives is appointed Prime Minister of New Zealand by the Governor-General of New Zealand, who then appoints the Cabinet of New Zealand on the advice of the Prime Minister
 Papua New Guinea Leader of the political party that has the support of a majority in the National Parliament is appointed Prime Minister of Papua New Guinea by the Governor-General of Papua New Guinea, who then appoints the Cabinet of Papua New Guinea on the advice of the Prime Minister
 Samoa Legislative Assembly appoints the Cabinet of Samoa
 Vanuatu Parliament of Vanuatu appoints the Cabinet of Vanuatu

See also


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External links

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