Nigeria President Invites Union for Talks on Economic Reform

President Olusegun Obasanjo has invited the Nigeria Labor Congress, the umbrella organization which represents the country's unions, for talks on the government's economic reform programs, in particular deregulation of the oil industry, a union leader said Thursday.

The talks will be held December,17, NLC General Secretary John Oday told Dow Jones Newswires in an interview.

Nigeria's two oil workers' unions have threatened strike action to start January 1 if the government doesn't rescind its decision to privatize the country's four ailing refineries. "(Obasanjo) said he wants to brief us on his reform agenda, so we are going to hear what he has to say," Oday said.

Presidential spokesmen weren't immediately available for comment.