French President Emmanuel Macron has named a senior French civil servant as his new prime minister as part of a government reshuffle.

Prime Minister Edouard Philippe and his entire government resigned as Mr Macron's ruling party reels from dire local election results and the president prepares to tackle the economic crisis resulting from the Covid-19 pandemic.

Top civil servant Jean Castex, who drew up the policy for easing the coronavirus lockdown, has been named as the new prime minister.

"The president of the Republic has named Jean Castex as prime minister and mandated him to form a government," the presidency said in a brief statement.

Mr Philippe and the government resigned this morning ahead of a cabinet reshuffle that President Emmanuel Macron says will set out a "new course" as the country grapples with the fallout of the coronavirus pandemic.

Mr Macron, who has pursued ambitious economic reforms since coming to office in 2017, has already admitted that the recession caused by the health crisis would require the government to shift tack.

In an interview with regional newspapers published yesterday, Mr Macron said France must prepare for a "very difficult" economic crisis, "so we have to chart a new course."

"I see this based on an economic, social, environmental and cultural reconstruction," he said. "Behind this, there will be a new team."