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UPDATE 2-German union wants Opel deal by Oct. 26

* IG Metall calls on Opel to rule out layoffs beyond 2016

* Opel can only defer wage hike until Oct. 31 if no deal agreed

* Parent GM to publish Q3 results on Oct. 31 (Adds company comment) By Christiaan Hetzner

FRANKFURT, Oct 12 (Reuters) - German trade union IG Metall wants to agree a labour deal with loss-making European carmaker Opel by Oct. 26, days before U.S. parent General Motors publishes quarterly results.

IG Metall also said in a letter on Friday to the 20,800 Opel employees in Germany it wanted the firm, which is looking to restructure its German business, to rule out compulsory redundancies through 2016 "and beyond" under a possible deal.

Opel, which has repeatedly said it wanted a deal with the union as soon as possible, said it, IG Metall and relevant works councils were in talks "on the strategy for the German plants. As soon as results are achieved, Opel will inform the public".

GM will post third-quarter results on Oct. 31, the last day on which Opel can defer paying a 4.3 percent industry-wide wage rose to its German workers if it has not yet agreed a new labour deal with IG Metall.

According to IG Metall, Opel has signalled it was prepared to sign a labour deal that would go past the current horizon of its mid-term business plan approved late in June, which lasts through 2016.

Opel had said in June it planned to stop manufacturing vehicles in its factory in Bochum, Germany, when the lifecycle of the Zafira Tourer MPV expired, two years later than the 2015 target it had previously planned.

Morgan Stanley analyst Adam Jonas said last month GM needed to sell Opel after dwindling sales and deteriorating pricing GM lost about $16 billion in Europe over the past dozen years. Jonas forecasts another $1 billion in annual operating losses for Opel, on average, through 2021.

GM has thrown its weight behind a restructuring of its loss-making German business as well as an alliance with French peer PSA , however, rather than opting for a sale or closure.

(Editing by Dan Lalor)

(christiaan.hetzner@thomsonreuters.com; +49 - 69 - 7565 1249; Reuters Messaging: christiaan.hetzner.thomsonreuters.com@reuters.net)

Keywords: OPEL GM/UNION