Ford Motor Co. is sending its global manufacturing chief to Shanghai to take over as president of the auto maker’s Asia/Pacific and Africa region.

Joe Hinrichs, 42, will make the move Dec. 1 to replace John Parker, executive vice president, who is retiring effective Jan. 1, ending a 41-year career with the company.

Succeeding Hinrichs as head of Global Manufacturing and Labor Affairs is John Fleming, who will add that role to go along with his current position as executive vice president and chairman and CEO of Ford of Europe. Fleming, 58, will continue to be based in Cologne, Germany.

Hinrichs joined Ford in 2000 as manager of the Van Dyke Transmission Plant in Sterling Heights, MI. He’s held many posts since, including serving a stint as CEO of Ford Motor Co. of Canada. He has been in his current position since January 2008.

Also announcing his retirement from Ford is Phil Spender, a Ford vice president and executive vice president for Mazda Motor Corp. Ford announced last week Spender would be moving back to Ford from Mazda, but did not indicate Spender’s retirement, now set for Jan. 1, was imminent.