Federal Chancellery (Germany)

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Federal Chancellery
- BKAmt -

State level Federation
position supreme federal authority
founding 1949
Headquarters BerlinBerlin Berlin
Authority management Helge Braun ( CDU ), Head of the Federal Chancellery and Federal Minister for Special Tasks
Servants 596 (June 1, 2019)
Budget volume 2.9 billion (2018) including Federal Chancellor
Web presence bundesregierung.de

The Federal Chancellery (abbreviation BKAmt ) is a supreme federal authority that supports the German Federal Chancellor in his tasks. It has its headquarters or first official seat in the federal capital Berlin and its second official seat in the federal city Bonn . As head of the authority, Helge Braun (CDU) is head of the Federal Chancellery and Federal Minister for special tasks.

Tasks and structure

The Federal Chancellery has the task of obtaining and keeping the information necessary for the work of the Federal Chancellor. This is done primarily through close contact with the federal ministries , which in turn have department-specific information. Since the Federal Chancellery coordinates the Federal Ministries, for example in the case of major inquiries , the internal structure of the Federal Chancellery corresponds to the respective ministries - this is also referred to as "mirror presentations". These political departments, created by Hans Globke , are intended to accompany the work of the relevant ministries on the one hand and enable the Federal Chancellor to monitor their work competently on the other. Department 2 , for example, corresponds to the Foreign Office and the Federal Ministry of Defense .

It also performs the administrative tasks of the federal government . The Chancellery currently employs around 600 people (as of 2018; 570 employees in 2016) with a current annual budget of around 2.9 billion euros (as of 2018; 2.41 billion euros in 2016).

Chancellery building in Berlin

Like all authorities, the Chancellery is also divided into a management and a work area. The administrative work is carried out by seven departments:

These are further divided into groups (except for Department 5), which in turn are divided into sections .

The Science and Politics Foundation is also assigned to the Federal Chancellery .

Management area

The Federal Chancellor’s management area includes the Federal Chancellor, the Head of the Federal Chancellery and the State Secretaries and State Ministers who are responsible for the Federal Chancellor and the Head of the Chancellery. They are responsible for the department heads, usually in the office of a ministerial director , whose bundled information about the head of the Federal Chancellery is used in briefings - such as the weekly "Great Situation".

Head of the Federal Chancellery

Helge Braun , head of the Federal Chancellery since 2018

The authority is not headed by the Federal Chancellor directly, but by the Head of the Federal Chancellery (abbreviated as ChefBK ), who, in accordance with Section 7 (1) of the GOBReg, also performs the business of a State Secretary of the Federal Government .

For ChefBK appoints the Chancellor either a State - in this case the incumbent is subject to the Federal Civil Service Act and may by the Federal President as a "political appointee" in accordance with § 54 BBG at any time in the active status are added - or he appoints a Federal Minister for Special Tasks for ChefBK whose position, however, corresponds to an official relationship under public law and who enjoys all the rights of a member of the Federal Government, although the Federal Chancellor can continue to dismiss him without further ado ( Art. 64 (1) GG / § 9 BMinG). The unofficial term (Federal) Chancellery Minister is therefore also used in the media and in public .

The ChiefBK acts as the central coordination point for the cooperation of the federal ministries, which inform it at all times about their work and thus about all government activities of the federal government. He also collects the decisions of the Federal Ministers in a circular procedure if the approval of the entire Federal Government is required but oral advice is not necessary, and in turn informs them of the result and decisions of the Federal Chancellor. In addition, he is responsible for the long-term planning of political projects of the federal government and he is also an important liaison point to the parliamentary organs of the federal government, the federal states , social groups and individuals as well as (together with the Federal Foreign Office) to representatives of foreign states. According to Section 7 (2) GOBReg, he can forward letters addressed to the Federal Chancellor or sent to him by the Federal President directly to the responsible Federal Minister.

If the Federal Chancellor does not decide himself, the ChiefBK sets the dates for the Federal Cabinet and the respective agenda and initiates the invitation to these meetings. He also heads the group of permanent state secretaries from all federal ministries, which regularly takes place two days before each cabinet meeting. The ChiefBK also takes part in the meetings of the Federal Cabinet and all of its committees, including the Federal Security Council, as well as the preliminary inter-ministerial discussions in accordance with Section 23 (1) GOBReg - if he has the rank of Federal Minister, he also has voting rights. The templates of the meetings must be forwarded to the ChefBK at least one week before the meetings. The details of transfers resulting from organizational decrees of the Federal Chancellor regarding the relocation of business areas between federal ministries are to be communicated to the ChefBK.

He also prepares the twice-yearly meetings of the ministers and senate presidents of the German states with the Federal Chancellor by meeting with the heads of the state chancelleries in advance under his chairmanship .

The Chief BK also conducts the weekly meetings on the national security situation, the so-called "intelligence situation" and the subsequent " presidential situation ". The Federal Intelligence Service is also subordinate to him - if the Federal Chancellor also appoints him as the Federal Government's Commissioner for the Intelligence Services, he is also directly involved in coordinating the other two federal intelligence services ( Federal Office for the Protection of the Constitution and the Military Counterintelligence Service ).

The National Regulatory Control Council is subject to its legal supervision .

The Federal Government Commissioner for Culture and the Media and the Federal Government Commissioner for Migration, Refugees and Integration are part of his portfolio .

Heads of the Federal Chancellery

Federal Minister for Special Tasks

State Secretaries in the Federal Chancellery, Parliamentary State Secretaries and State Ministers with the Federal Chancellor

Additional (civil servant) state secretaries can be appointed to the Federal Chancellery to support the Federal Chancellor and the Chief Financial Officer. These either receive their own business areas as representatives of the federal government or participate in the management of the general administration of the Chancellery. In addition, the Federal Chancellor has the right to assign himself Parliamentary State Secretaries to whom he can also assign his own areas of responsibility (e.g. since 1998/1999 as Minister of State for Culture and since 2005 as Commissioner for Integration ) and who can assist him in his political work (in particular as his Representatives in the Bundestag and Bundesrat and their committees). As the only member of the Federal Government, the Federal Chancellor has been granted the privilege since 1999 that his Parliamentary State Secretaries do not have to be members of the German Bundestag . Since the late 1970s, it has also been common practice for the Federal Chancellor to appoint his Parliamentary State Secretaries as State Ministers (in accordance with Section 8 ParlStG). The Federal Chancellor can dismiss them at any time ( Section 4 ParlStG).

The head of the Federal Government's Press and Information Office and spokesman for the Federal Government is subordinate to the Federal Chancellor, but is the independent head of a supreme federal authority with the rank of State Secretary and not assigned to the Federal Chancellery.

Official state secretaries in the Federal Chancellery

Parliamentary State Secretaries to the Federal Chancellor

Minister of State to the Federal Chancellor

Federal Government Commissioner for the Intelligence Services and Intelligence Service Coordinator


In the founding year 1949, it was assumed that 120 employees plus work aids for the Federal Chancellery. The workforce increased from 150 to 250 in the following 20 years. During the time of Federal Chancellor Willy Brandt (1969–1974), the number of employees increased to 450 and then rose continuously to 500 by 2016. At the beginning of 2019, there were already 750 employees, for whom a new building worth at least 460 million euros is to be built.

Numerous employees are seconded and financed by the ministries.



In 1949, some rooms in the Museum Koenig served as the first Federal Chancellery . On November 3, 1949, the Belgian military handed the Palais Schaumburg in Bonn over to the federal government. In 1954 and 1955, two independent extensions were added. From 1976 to 1999 the seat of the Federal Chancellery was in a new building that had been planned by the Stieldorf planning group , after which a second seat was initially left there. From May 2001 to July 2013 the Palais Schaumburg was the second official seat of the Federal Chancellery. He is assigned to the central department (Department 1) or the Chancellor's office and, with around 20 employees, is responsible for processing petitions and petitions as well as special tasks. In August 2013, the office in Bonn was temporarily relocated to the building of the Federal Government's Press and Information Office due to the renovation of the palace, which is expected to be completed in 2022 .


From 1999 until the move into a new building, the Federal Chancellery temporarily sat in the former State Council building of the GDR on Berlin's Schloßplatz (today: European School of Management and Technology ). Since 2001, a new building designed by Axel Schultes in Berlin's Spreebogen, separated from the Reichstag building by the Platz der Republik , has served as the headquarters of the authorities. The building opens up to a central square opposite the Paul-Löbe-Haus , which is to be designed as a citizens' forum. It is part of the " Band des Bundes " group of buildings at Spreebogenpark . Employees of the Minister of State for Culture are currently also working in the building .


  • Marco Althaus: The Federal Chancellery as an instrument of political leadership in the parliamentary system. on Academia.edu , Free University, Berlin 1993.
  • Volker Busse / Hans Hofmann: Federal Chancellery and Federal Government. Tasks - organization - working method , Nomos Verlag, Baden-Baden (7th revised and updated edition) 2019, ISBN 978-3-8487-5863-0 .
  • Joannah Caborn: The state architecture in Bonn and Berlin . In: Carborn: Creeping turnaround. Discourses of Nation and Memory in the Constitution of the Berlin Republic. , 2006, ISBN 3-89771-739-5 .
  • Jürgen Gros: The Chancellery in the power network of the federal government, governing parties and the majority parliamentary group. In: Karl-Rudolf Korte / Gerhard Hirscher (ed.): Representation politics or decision-making politics. On the change of political styles in western democracies. Munich 2000.
  • Klaus Harpprecht : In the Chancellery. Diary of the years with Willy Brandt . Rowohlt Taschenbuch Verlag, Reinbek 2001, ISBN 3-499-61158-9 .
  • Thomas Knoll: The Federal Chancellery. Organization and function from 1949 to 1999. Wiesbaden 2004.
  • Katja Schlesinger: Expansion of the domestic power in the Federal Chancellery. The Schmidt, Kohl and Schröder systems. Cologne 2000 (un. MA, reference: Die Systeme Schmidt, Kohl and Schröder , May 3, 2006).
  • Klaus Seemann: Disenchanted Federal Chancellery - Memories of a Staff Council Chairman, vpa Verlag political archive, Landshut 1975, ISBN 3-921240-53-0 .


Web links

Commons : Federal Chancellery  - collection of images, videos and audio files

Individual evidence

  1. ^ Draft of a law on the establishment of the federal budget for the budget year 2020. (PDF) In: http://dipbt.bundestag.de/ . Federal Council, August 9, 2019, accessed on September 4, 2019 .
  2. ↑ List of Abbreviations. (PDF; 49 kB) Abbreviations for the constitutional organs, the highest federal authorities and the highest federal courts. In: bund.de. Federal Office of Administration (BVA), accessed on August 14, 2016 .
  3. ^ Definition of "Spiegelreferat" on lexexakt.de
  4. Law on the establishment of the federal budget for the 2016 budget year (Budget Law 2016). (PDF; 36.1 MB) In: bundeshaushalt-info.de. Federal Ministry of Finance (BMF), December 21, 2015, p. 16 , accessed on August 14, 2016 .
  5. New head of the Chancellery Braun: Merkel's puller doesn't need a stage , n-tv from March 10, 2018
  6. Oliver G. Hamm The Federal Chancellery
  7. ^ Georg Milde: Leadership styles in the Chancellery. politik & kommunikation, September 22, 2016, accessed on December 22, 2019 .
  8. Hildburg Bruns: Chancellery gets a new building - for at least 460 million euros. BZ , January 15, 2019, accessed December 22, 2019 .
  9. Christoph Neßhöver: The weaknesses of the Chancellery. Manager Magazin , June 26, 2013, accessed December 22, 2019 .

Coordinates: 52 ° 31 '13 "  N , 13 ° 22' 8.7"  E