Updated from 1:59 a.m. EDT

Swedish telecommunications company

Ericsson

(ERIC) - Get Report

has appointed Hans Vestberg as president and CEO, succeeding Carl-Henric Svanberg who has been named chairman of oil company

BP

(BP) - Get Report

.

Vestberg is currently Ericsson's executive vice president and chief financial officer. His appointment is effective Jan. 1, 2010.

Svanberg will remain as president and CEO until the end of the year. He'll remain a member of the Ericcson board, the company said in a statement Thursday.

London-based BP, Europe's second largest oil company, said Svanberg will replace Peter Sutherland as its chairman.

"I am sure Carl-Henric will be a worthy successor. He is a businessman of international stature who is recognized for his transformation of Ericsson," BP CEO Tony Hayward said. "Our shared views on many aspects of global business give me great confidence that we will work very effectively together on the next phase of BP's progress."

Vestberg, 44 years old, has been with Ericsson since 1991. He has held management positions in China, Sweden, Chile, Brazil and the U.S. and has been chief financial officer since 2007.

"(Vestberg) has been instrumental in developing Ericsson's industry leading services operation which grew threefold with good profitability during his five years of management," said Ericsson Chairman Michael Treschow.

Svanberg said last week that the mobile telecommunications sector was in a stronger position than most to weather the global economic downturn.

"I think it is clear that telecommunications, mobile telecommunications in particular, have become such a necessity," he told the

Associated Press

.

Ericsson reported a 35% drop in first-quarter profit as weak results from its handset unit

Sony Ericsson

and higher restructuring costs took their toll. Still, it posted earnings of $210 million and Svanberg said at the time that the effects of the global recession on the mobile network market were so far limited.

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