The United Nations’ Food & Agriculture Organisation has secured only part of its ambition to expand its biannual budget, with its governing conference, in Rome, approving spending of US$765.7m from 2006-2007.

The UN agency said afterwards that the budget would “only partially offset the cost increases in FAO’s budget caused by inflation”, adding it would “have to absorb US$38.6m in expenses through efficiency savings and programme reductions”. The decision increases FAO spending by US$16.6m over the current 2004-5 budget of US$749 million, but is towards the lower end of its proposed budget of between US$75m and US$790m.