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Thierry Desmarest and Patrick Pouyanné to Lead Oil Giant Total After Chief’s Death

PARIS — Total, the French oil giant, on Wednesday appointed two insiders to lead the company, moving swiftly to replace Christophe de Margerie, its chairman and chief executive, who died Monday in an airplane accident.

After an emergency meeting in Paris, the board said it had unanimously chosen Patrick Pouyanné, 51, head of the company’s refining and chemicals business, as chief executive, and Thierry Desmarest, 68, Mr. de Margerie’s predecessor, for the role of chairman. At the end of next year, Mr. Pouyanné will assume both positions, and Mr. Desmarest, a Total executive since 1981, will retire.

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