Monaco - Tips


Bureau of European and Eurasian Affairs
June 2007

Background Note: Monaco

Flag of Monaco is two equal horizontal bands of red (top) and white.


Principality of Monaco

Area: 1.95 sq. km. (0.8 sq. mi); about the size of New York City's Central
City: Capital--Monaco, pop. 32,409 (July 2005 est.).
Terrain: Hilly.
Climate: Mediterranean with mild, wet winters and hot, dry summers.

Nationality: Noun and adjective--Monegasque.
Population (July 2006 est.): 32,543.
Annual growth rate (2007 est.): 0.386%.
Ethnic groups (2007): French 47%, Italian 16%, Monegasque 16%, other 21%.
Religions: Roman Catholic 90%, other 10%.
Languages: French (official), English, Italian, and Monegasque.
Education: Years compulsory--10, ages 6-16. Attendance--99%. Literacy--99%.
Health (2007 est.): Infant mortality--5.27 deaths/1,000 live births. Life
expectancy--75.99 yrs. male; 83.85 yrs. female. Birth rate (2007 est.)--9.12
births/1,000 population. Death rate (2006 est.)--12.92 deaths/1,000

Type: Constitutional monarchy.
Constitution: December 17, 1962 (amended in April 2002).
Branches: Executive--Prince Albert II (chief of state), Minister of State
Jean-Paul Proust (head of government), Council of Government (cabinet under
authority of the monarch). Legislative--unicameral National Council (24
members). Judicial--Court of First Instance, Court of Appeal, High Court of
Appeal, Criminal Court, Supreme Court.
Subdivisions: Four quarters (quartiers)--Monaco-Ville, La Condamine,
Monte-Carlo, Fontvieille.
Political parties: Union pour Monaco (UPM), National and Democratic Union
(UND), Parti Monégasque (PM).
Suffrage: Universal adult at age 18.

GDP: Monaco does not publish economic figures such as gross domestic product,
though estimates placed purchasing power parity GDP at $976.3 million in
Avg. annual growth rate (2003 est.): 1.89%.
Per capita purchasing power parity GDP (2006 est.): $30,000.
Work force (2003, 41,708): Private sector--37,949. Public sector--3,759.
Services--83.5%. Banking--23.43%. Tourism and hotel--11.64%. Retail--4.92%.
Construction and public works--32.02%. Industry--6.98%.
Agricultural products: None.
Industry: Types--tourism, construction, chemicals, food products, plastics,
precision instruments, cosmetics, ceramics.
Trade: Imports (2005)--$916.1 million. Exports (2005)--$716.3 million. Note:
full customs integration with France, which collects and rebates Monegasque
trade duties; also participates in EU market system through customs union
with France.
Currency: Monaco, along with France and the other 11 members of the European
Monetary Union (EMU), adopted the euro (€)as its official currency on
January 1, 2002. As in other EMU states, euros minted in Monaco have special
Monegasque features on one side of the coin.

The Principality of Monaco is the second-smallest independent state in the
world, after the Holy See (Vatican City). It is located on the Mediterranean
coast, 18 kilometers (11 mi.) east of Nice, France, and is surrounded on
three sides by France. Monaco is divided into four sections: Monaco-Ville,
the old city on a rocky promontory extending into the Mediterranean; La
Condamine, the section along the port; Monte-Carlo, the principal residential
and resort area; and Fontvieille, a newly constructed area reclaimed from the

The principality is noted for its beautiful natural scenery and mild, sunny
climate. The average minimum temperature in January and February is 8oC (47o
F); in July and August the average maximum temperature is 26oC (78oF).

In July 2006, Monaco's population was estimated at 32,543, with an estimated
average growth rate for 2007 of 0.386%.

French is the official language; English, Italian, and Monegasque (a blend of
French and Italian) also are spoken. The literacy rate is 99%. Roman
Catholicism is the official religion, with freedom of other religions
guaranteed by the constitution.

Founded in 1215 as a colony of Genoa, Monaco has been ruled by the House of
Grimaldi since 1297, except when under French control from 1789 to 1814.
Designated as a protectorate of Sardinia from 1815 until 1860 by the Treaty
of Vienna, Monaco's sovereignty was recognized by the Franco-Monegasque
Treaty of 1861. The Prince of Monaco was an absolute ruler until a
constitution was promulgated in 1911.

In July 1918, a treaty was signed providing for limited French protection
over Monaco. The treaty, formally noted in the Treaty of Versailles,
established that Monegasque policy would be aligned with French political,
military, and economic interests.

A new constitution, proclaimed in 1962, abolished capital punishment,
provided for female suffrage, and established a Supreme Court to guarantee
fundamental liberties.

In 1993, Monaco became an official member of the United Nations with full
voting rights. It joined the Council of Europe in 2004.

Three months after the death of his father, Prince Rainier III, on April 6,
Prince Albert II formally acceded to the throne on July 12, 2005.

Monaco has been governed as a constitutional monarchy since 1911, with the
Prince as chief of state. The executive branch consists of a Minister of
State (head of government), who presides over a five-member Council of
Government (cabinet). The Minister of State is responsible for foreign
relations. As the Prince's representative, the Minister of State also directs
the executive services, commands the police, and presides (with voting
powers) over the Council of Government. The five members of the Council are
respectively responsible for internal affairs, external affairs, the
environment, finance and economy, and social affairs and health.

Under the 1962 constitution, the Prince shares his power with the unicameral
National Council. Sixteen of the 24 members of this legislative body are
elected by list majority system, and 8 by proportional representation to
serve 5-year terms. The elections were last held on February 9, 2003, and
will be held next in February 2008. If the Prince dissolves the National
Council, new elections must be held within 3 months. Usually meeting twice
annually, the Council votes on the budget and endorses laws proposed by the

Ordinances passed by the National Council are debated in the Council of
Government, as are the ministerial decrees signed by the Minister of State.
Once approved, the ordinances must be submitted to the Prince within 80 days
for his signature, which makes them legally enforceable. If he does not
express opposition within 10 days of submission, they become valid.

Judicial power is invested in the Prince, who delegates judicial procedures
to the various courts, which dispense justice in his name. The independence
of the judges is guaranteed by the constitution. The Supreme Court is
composed of five chief members and two assistant judges named by the Prince
on the basis of nominations by the National Council and other government
bodies. The Supreme Court is the highest court for judicial appeals and also
interprets the constitution when necessary. Monaco's legal system, closely
related to that of France, is patterned after the Napoleonic Code.

The principality's local affairs (the administration of the four quarters of
Monaco-Ville, La Condamine, Monte Carlo, and Fontvieille) are directed by the
Communal Council, which consists of 15 elected members and is presided over
by the Mayor.

Principal Government Officials
Chief of State--Prince Albert II, Crown Prince
Minister of State--Jean-Paul Proust
Ambassador to the United States and United Nations--Gilles Noghes

Council of Government
Interior--Paul Masseron
Exterior--Jean Pastorelli
Finance and Economic Affairs--Gilles Tonelli
Social Affairs and Health--Jean-Jacques Campana
Environment, Equipment and Urbanism--Robert Calcagno

National Council President--Stephane Valeri
President of Supreme Court--Roland Drago
Director of Judicial Services--Philippe Narmino

Monaco, located on the Mediterranean coast, has an economy primarily geared
toward finance, commerce, and tourism. Low taxes have drawn many foreign
companies to Monaco; the companies' production accounts for around 50% of the
€593 million annual government income (2002). The enterprises pay a 33.33%
tax only if more than 25% of their revenue is generated abroad. Ever since
Monaco's famed casino opened in 1856, the tourism industry has been booming.
It currently accounts for close to 25% of the annual revenue.

Customs, postal services, telecommunications, and banking in Monaco are
governed by an economic and customs union with France. The official currency
is the euro.

Though official economic statistics are not published, 2006 estimates placed
the gross domestic product at $976.3 million and the per capita income at
$30,000. Monaco does not publish the figures for unemployment, but in 2005
the rate was estimated to be at 0%.

Monaco is noted for its activity in the field of marine sciences. Its
Oceanographic Museum, formerly directed by Jacques Cousteau, is one of the
most renowned institutions of its kind in the world. Monaco imports and
exports products and services from all over the world. There is no commercial
agriculture in Monaco.

Monaco actively participates in the United Nations, which it joined in 1993.
Monaco joined the Council of Europe on October 4, 2004. Monaco also is a
member of many international and intergovernmental organizations, including
Interpol, the UN Educational, Scientific, and Cultural Organization (UNESCO),
and the World Health Organization (WHO). The International Hydrographic
Bureau (IHB) is headquartered in Monaco.

The Principality of Monaco is a sovereign and independent state, linked
closely to France by the Treaty of July 1918, which was formally noted in
Article 436 of the Treaty of Versailles of 1919. The foreign policy of Monaco
is one illustration of this accord: France has agreed to defend the
independence and sovereignty of Monaco, while the Monegasque Government has
agreed to exercise its sovereign rights in conformity with French interests.
Since then, the relations between the sovereign states of France and Monaco
have been further defined in the Treaty of 1945 and the Agreement of 1963.

In 2002, Monaco renegotiated its 1918 treaty with France. In 2005, it was
ratified by both parties and entered into force. The terms of the treaty:

*Upgrade France's representation in Monaco from Consulate General to that
of an embassy;
*Permit, for the first time, other countries to accredit ambassadors to
Monaco; and
*Formally recognize the succession scheme set out in the 1962
Constitution, which extends eligibility to the Prince's daughters and
other family members.

Although not a member of the European Union (EU), Monaco is closely
associated with the economic apparatus of the EU through its customs union
with France and its reliance upon the euro as its official currency.

Monaco has 10 diplomatic missions in Western Europe and permanent
representation at the United Nations and the Council of Europe. It maintains
honorary consulates in 106 cities in 45 countries. Seventy-six countries have
consulates general, consulates, or honorary consulates in or accredited to

The United States and Monaco enjoy excellent relations, which both countries
seek to maintain and strengthen. From 1956 until her death in 1982, the
American-born Grace Kelly was married to Prince Rainier III, Prince Albert's
father. The United States does not yet have a diplomatic mission located in

In December 2006, the United States and Monaco upgraded from consular to full
diplomatic relations. Shortly after, Ambassador Craig Stapleton (France) was
accredited to Monaco, and Ambassador Gilles Noghes became the first
Monegasque ambassador to the United States.

Principal U.S. Official
Ambassador (Paris, France)--Craig Stapleton

The U.S. Embassy in France is located at 2 Avenue Gabriel, Paris 8 (tel. [33]
(1) 4312-2222). The U.S. Consulate General at Marseille is located at Place
Varian Fry, 13286 Marseille Cedex 6 (tel. [33]-(4)-91-54-92-00).

The U.S. Department of State's Consular Information Program advises Americans
traveling and residing abroad through Consular Information Sheets, Public
Announcements, and Travel Warnings. Consular Information Sheets exist for all
countries and include information on entry and exit requirements, currency
regulations, health conditions, safety and security, crime, political
disturbances, and the addresses of the U.S. embassies and consulates abroad.
Public Announcements are issued to disseminate information quickly about
terrorist threats and other relatively short-term conditions overseas that
pose significant risks to the security of American travelers. Travel Warnings
are issued when the State Department recommends that Americans avoid travel
to a certain country because the situation is dangerous or unstable.

For the latest security information, Americans living and traveling abroad
should regularly monitor the Department's Bureau of Consular Affairs Internet
web site at, where the current Worldwide Caution,
Public Announcements, and Travel Warnings can be found. Consular Affairs
Publications, which contain information on obtaining passports and planning a
safe trip abroad, are also available at For
additional information on international travel, see

The Department of State encourages all U.S citizens who traveling or residing
abroad to register via the State Department's travel registration website or
at the nearest U.S. embassy or consulate abroad. Registration will make your
presence and whereabouts known in case it is necessary to contact you in an
emergency and will enable you to receive up-to-date information on security

Emergency information concerning Americans traveling abroad may be obtained
by calling 1-888-407-4747 toll free in the U.S. and Canada or the regular
toll line 1-202-501-4444 for callers outside the U.S. and Canada.

The National Passport Information Center (NPIC) is the U.S. Department of
State's single, centralized public contact center for U.S. passport
information. Telephone: 1-877-4USA-PPT (1-877-487-2778). Customer service
representatives and operators for TDD/TTY are available Monday-Friday, 7:00
a.m. to 12:00 midnight, Eastern Time, excluding federal holidays.

Travelers can check the latest health information with the U.S. Centers for
Disease Control and Prevention in Atlanta, Georgia. A hotline at 877-FYI-TRIP
(877-394-8747) and a web site at give the
most recent health advisories, immunization recommendations or requirements,
and advice on food and drinking water safety for regions and countries. A
booklet entitled "Health Information for International Travel" (HHS
publication number CDC-95-8280) is available from the U.S. Government
Printing Office, Washington, DC 20402, tel. (202) 512-1800.

Further Electronic Information
Department of State Web Site. Available on the Internet at http://, the Department of State web site provides timely, global
access to official U.S. foreign policy information, including Background
Notes and daily press briefings along with the directory of key officers of
Foreign Service posts and more. The Overseas Security Advisory Council (OSAC)
provides security information and regional news that impact U.S. companies
working abroad through its website provides a portal to all export-related assistance and market
information offered by the federal government and provides trade leads, free
export counseling, help with the export process, and more.
STAT-USA/Internet, a service of the U.S. Department of Commerce, provides
authoritative economic, business, and international trade information from
the Federal government. The site includes current and historical
trade-related releases, international market research, trade opportunities,
and country analysis and provides access to the National Trade Data Bank. ***********************************************************
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