Apart from the weekly cabinet meeting, Spain’s only cabinet committee composed exclusively of ministers is the so-called Foreign Policy Council (Consejo de Política Exterior) which meets no more than twice a year. This council is governed by royal decrees 1412/2000 and 1389/2007.
Similarly, there is not a strong tradition of ministerial committees (composed of several ministers and individual non-cabinet members such as secretaries of state), in the Spanish administration. With the exception of the Committee for Economic Affairs, no other committee meets regularly or helps to prepare the Council of Ministers meetings. From 2004 to 2009, only other two committees existed, but since April 17, 2009 (and according to the Royal Decree 639/2009), there are in theory eight specialized ones (known formally as Comisiones Delegadas del Gobierno). These ministerial committees respectively deal with economic affairs, emergency situations, relations with autonomous regions, scientific research and technological development, immigration, climate change, gender equality, and development aid. Until December 2010, a ministerial Committee for the Spanish Presidency of the EU also existed.
The ministerial Committee for Economic Affairs normally meets on Thursdays to review and schedule economic or budgetary interministerial coordination. This committee is chaired by the minister for economy and finance (who is also second deputy prime minister). The other members of this committee are five ministers with responsibilities in economic areas (including territorial policy, infrastructure, employment and immigration, industry and trade, and environment and agriculture), the secretaries of state for economy, finance and budgeting, and the civil service, and the director of the PM’s Private Office. A representative from the Ministry for Foreign Affairs and the secretary of state for the European Union are also summoned when EU issues are discussed. This committee effectively filters out or settles issues a day before the cabinet meeting, but only discusses economic issues.