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First Minister

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Title: First Minister  
Author: World Heritage Encyclopedia
Language: English
Subject: Prime minister, Head of government, Minister-President, Changuu, Chancellor
Collection: Government Occupations
Publisher: World Heritage Encyclopedia

First Minister

A First Minister is the leader of a government cabinet, usually now used to refer to the political leader of a subnational entity, such as the devolved administrations of Scotland, Wales, and Northern Ireland, or of a dependent territory.


  • Canada 1
  • Norway 2
  • United Kingdom 3
  • Other 4
  • See also 5
  • References 6


In Canada, "First Ministers" is a collective term that refers to all of the Canadian first ministers of the Crown, otherwise known as heads of government, including the Prime Minister of Canada and the provincial and territorial premiers. It is used in such formulae as "first ministers' meetings".

In Newfoundland and Labrador, the Inuit self-governing region of Nunatsiavut provides for a First Minister responsible to the Nunatsiavut Assembly.


The head of government of Norway was called First Minister (Norwegian: førstestatsråd) between 1814 and 1873, while it was in personal union with Sweden. In 1893, 12 years prior to the dissolution of the union, it was changed to Prime Minister (statsminister).

United Kingdom

In the United Kingdom, the term First Minister was once used interchangeably with Prime Minister, such as when Winston Churchill stated: "I did not become His Majesty's First Minister so that I might oversee the liquidation of the British Empire!"

Nowadays, the term is used to describe the leaders of the devolved governments of Scotland,[1] Wales and Northern Ireland. See


In Germany, the first minister in the federal states is known as the Ministerpräsident.

In Malaysia, the first minister for each state with a Malay ruler is known as the Menteri Besar.

Belize between 1961 and 1964, when the title was changed to Premier.

See also


  1. ^ "About: People: Who runs the Scottish Government".  

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