Countries which failed to agree a set of binding ‘modalities’ targets for the ongoing World Trade Organisation agricultural talks have backed a timetable of meetings to try and secure a deal before the planned WTO ministerial summit, at Cancun, Mexico, in September.

Only Bulgaria objected to the plan proposed by talks chairman Stuart Harbinson to “organise technical and other consultations in order to facilitate progress on all fronts.”

These will start after Easter. “Delegates will be informed as much in advance as possible of the dates and subjects of these consultations,” he said.

The next formal meeting of the talks’ forum  – the Special Session of the Committee on Agriculture – takes place on June 26 and 27.