FRANCE has rejected the far-right Marine Le Pen and voted to have Emmanuel Macron remain its president, polling has suggested.

French polling agencies are projecting that centrist Macron will win the presidential run-off, beating Le Pen in a tight race that was overshadowed by the war in Ukraine and saw a surge in French support for extremist ideas.

If the projections are borne out by official results on Sunday, Macron would be the first French president in 20 years to win a second term, since Jacques Chirac in 2002.

But he would face a divided nation and a battle to keep his parliamentary majority in legislative elections in June.

Five years ago, Macron won a sweeping victory to become France’s youngest president at 39.

The margin is expected to be way smaller this time: Polling agencies Opinionway, Harris and Ifop projected that Macron would win between 57% and 58.5% percent of the vote, with Le Pen getting between 41.5% and 43%.

Projections prepared by French media use a combination of real results and exit polls and are considered ultra-reliable in the two-way contest.