The new governance structure befitting an overseas collectivity took effect on 15 July 2007 with the first session of the Territorial Council (French: Conseil territorial) and the election of Louis-Constant Fleming as president of the Territorial Council. On 25 July 2008 Fleming resigned after being sanctioned by the Conseil d'État for one year over problems with his 2007 election campaign. On 7 August, Frantz Gumbs was elected as President of the Territorial Council. However, his election was declared invalid on 10 April 2009 and Daniel Gibbs appointed as Acting President of the Territorial Council on 14 April 2009. Gumbs was reelected on 5 May 2009.
Before 2007, Saint Martin was coded as GP (Guadeloupe) in ISO 3166-1. In October 2007, it received the ISO 3166-1 code MF (alpha-2 code), MAF (alpha-3 code), and 663 (numeric code).
The coat of arms of the French overseas collectivity Saint-Martin features a ship, a palm and a sun, and reads "Collectivité de Saint Martin". The comune that existed until 22 February 2007, used similar arms but with the legend "Ville de Saint Martin".
The French part of the island has a land area of 54.3 square kilometres (21.0 sq mi). A local English-based dialect is spoken in informal situations on both the French and Dutch sides of the island. At the January 2009 French census, the population in the French part of the island was 36,824 (up from only 8,072 inhabitants at the 1982 census), which means a population density of 678 inhabitants per square kilometre (1,760 /sq mi) in 2009.
The official currency of Saint Martin is the euro, though the US dollar is also widely accepted. Tourism is the main economic activity.
INSEE estimated that the total GDP of Saint Martin amounted to 421 million euros in 1999 (US$449 million at 1999 exchanges rates; US$599 million at Oct. 2007 exchange rates). In that same year the GDP per capita of Saint Martin was 14,500 euros (US$15,500 at 1999 exchanges rates; US$20,600 at Oct. 2007 exchange rates), which was 39% lower than the average GDP per capita of metropolitan France in 1999. In comparison, the GDP per capita on the Dutch side of the island, Sint Maarten, was 14,430 euros in 2004.
^The French law was passed in February 2007, but the new status only came in force once the local assemblies were elected, with the second leg of the vote ultimately occurring on 15 July 2007. See J. P. Thiellay, Droit des outre-mers, Paris:Dalloz, 2007.
^Staff reporter, last= (9 December 2003). "French Caribbean voters reject change". Caribbean Net News. Retrieved 9 February 2007. "However voters on the two tiny French dependencies of Saint-Barthelemy and Saint-Martin, which have been administratively attached to Guadeloupe, approved the referendum and are set to acquire the new status of "overseas collectivity"."
^Staff reporter (8 August 2008). "Frantz Gumbs elected new president of Collectivité". The Daily Herald. Retrieved 17 August 2008. "Frantz Gumbs, formerly president of Union Pour le Progrès (UPP) party, swept into power as new president of the Collectivité at an extraordinary meeting of the Territorial Council on Thursday after winning the 23-councillor vote with a clear majority over Marthe Ogoundélé-Tessi."