WTO negotiators have missed the deadline to cut subsidies that lead to over-fishing.
Reuters reports that it has been impossible to reach U.N conservation targets because of the loss of work hours due to the Covid crisis.
Leaders around the world committed in 2015 to strike a deal ending harmful government subsidies, with China, the EU, the US, South Korea, and Japan being the main donors.
Campaigners say an ambitious, timely deal could reverse the steep decline in fish populations.
“It is disappointing,” said Remi Parmentier, strategic adviser for Friends of Ocean Action, who has been an environmental advocate at the WTO for two decades.