McGinley, who is the first Irishman to take the captaincy, will be hoping to retain the coveted title after the side's heroic comeback against Team USA last year.
"It's a week that I'm really looking forward to," he said.
McGinley takes over from José María Olazábal and will be up against US captain Tom Watson, having previously served as an assistant to both Olazábal and to Colin Montgomerie before him.
"This is a position that I'm really thrilled to be in and it's also a very humbling experience. I can't wait to get into the role of being the captain," McGinley said on Tuesday.
"I'm relishing the thought of taking on one of my great heroes, Tom Watson. He's not only a wonderful person, but a great ambassador for the game of golf."
The announcement comes after Northern Ireland's Darren Clarke officially ruled himself out, having been one of the favourites to lead Team Europe.
With Clarke now still hoping to keep his focus on playing, a number of top European players have voiced support for McGinley - including world number one Rory McIlroy.
"Myself, Ian Poulter, Luke Donald and Justin Rose have all voiced their opinion that they want Paul," the Co Down star said, prior to the final appointment.
Now the new captain has 20 months to prepare for another highly anticipated battle with Team USA.