New Caledonian politicians have expressed regret at the departure of the French prime minister Edouard Philippe who quit after poor results of the ruling party in the municipal elections.
They expressed appreciation for his role in chairing the committee of the Noumea Accord signatories four times and for his close involvement in the referendum process.
Mr Philippe visited New Caledonia twice, including on the day after the 2018 referendum on independence from France in which a majority voted for the status quo.
Both anti- and pro-independence leaders say it will be a challenge for the new French government ministers to familiarise themselves with the complexity of New Caledonia situation as less than three months remain before the next referendum.
President Emmanuel Macron has appointed Jean Castex as new prime minister, who in turn chose Sebastien Lecornu as new overseas minister.
Mr Lecornu, who replaces Annick Giradin, is the first overseas minister born in mainland France in 11 years.
Ms Girardin is the new minister of the sea.