Bundesländer - 1056

Federal states

Germany is a federal state. Both the central federal government and the 16 federal states have independent areas of jurisdiction. The government in Berlin is responsible for foreign policy, European policy, defense, justice, employment, social affairs, tax and health. The federal states are responsible for internal security, schooling, tertiary education, administration and local government. Central government’s area of responsibility is mainly limited to legislation, in which the federal states are involved through their presence in the Bundesrat. It is the duty of the federal administration systems, on the other hand, to enforce not only the laws that apply in their own particular state, but those of central government as well. The reasons for this task sharing lie in the past: The German nation state emerged in 1871 through the union of several independent states. This made the establishment of a larger central administration system superfluous.