Executive Council (Commonwealth countries)

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This article is about the constitutional organ in Commonwealth countries. For other uses, see Executive Council (disambiguation).

An Executive Council in Commonwealth constitutional practice based on the Westminster system is a constitutional organ which exercises executive power and (notionally) advises the governor or governor-general. Executive Councils often make decisions via Orders in Council.

Executive Councillors are informally called "ministers". Some Executive Councils, especially in Canada and Australia, are chaired by a President or a Vice-President. In other Commonwealth countries there is no formal president of the Executive Council, although meetings are held in the presence of the Governor-general or Governor (except in rare cases) and decisions require the Governor-general's assent.

These Councils have almost the same functions as the Privy Council in the United Kingdom and Canada, and accordingly, decisions of the Cabinet gain legal effect by being formally adopted by the Executive Council.

Current executive councils[edit]

Former executive councils[edit]

Former Commonwealth executive councils[edit]

  • Flag of Hong Kong (1959-1997).svg: Executive Council of Hong Kong (1841 – 1997) The body held executive authority in Hong Kong. The council continues to function from 1997 to the present, however, Hong Kong ceased to be a member of the Commonwealth in 1997.

See also[edit]