France's Ecological Transition Minister Barbara Pompili leaves following the weekly cabinet meeting at the Elysee Palace in Paris, France, February 15, 2022.
France's Ecological Transition Minister Barbara Pompili leaves following the weekly cabinet meeting at the Elysee Palace in Paris, France, February 15, 2022. Reuters / BENOIT TESSIER

Emmanuel Macron will retain his current finance and interior ministers while appointing only the second woman to head France's foreign ministry, BFM TV reported, as the president reshuffles his cabinet ahead of pivotal elections.

After his re-election in April, when the far right came its closest yet to taking the presidency, Macron pledged to govern France "in a different way" from a first term during which his focus on economic reforms left much of the electorate discontented.

With first COVID-19 and now surging inflation reversing some of the hard-fought gains earned by those reforms, he now needs to persuade voters he is responding to their frustrations in time for June's parliamentary ballot.

The reshuffle is due to be announced on Friday and, if confirmed, the three nominations - plus Macron loyalist Marc Fesneau as the new agriculture minister - would suggest the president has not opted for a wholesale overhaul of his leadership - though with women playing a more prominent role.

Retaining their respective finance and interior ministry portfolios, Bruno Le Maire and Gerald Darmanin, will be joined on the cabinet's top table by Catherine Colonna as foreign minister, the broadcaster said.

Colonna is currently France's ambassador to Britain and former spokeswoman to late president Jacques Chirac.

Finance Ministry officials did not immediately comment on Le Maire's reported job renewal.

Macron - busy with crisis diplomacy abroad and tough political bargaining ahead of the parliamentary vote at home - has taken nearly a month to appoint a new cabinet.

On Monday he named Elisabeth Borne as prime minister. The left-leaning career technocrat served in his earlier governments, most recently as labour minister, when she stared down trade unions over unemployment benefit reform.

If Macron wins the legislature, his government's priorities will include further measures to help households make ends meet as prices surge, pushing back the retirement age as part of a pension system overhaul and acting faster to combat climate change.

Although polls show Macron he should be able to form a ruling majority, he is under pressure from an alliance of left-wing parties and a re-energised far-right leader, Marine Le Pen.

Should Macron and his allies lose the parliamentary election, he will have to name a new prime minister from the ruling majority who will then be tasked with naming a new cabinet.