Delphi on Friday said that it had postponed plans to file a motion in bankruptcy court throwing out current labour agreements to 31 March.

In a statement, the supplier said that, "based upon progress in discussions with its major unions and General Motors", it would continue talks to reach a comprehensive agreement by 30 March. If a deal is not agreed, it will head for court the next day, seeking authorisation to reject the collective bargaining agreements and terminate hourly post-retirement health care plans and life insurance.

"While major obstacles and difficult issues remain to be resolved, the discussions to date with GM and our major unions helped frame the concerns and objectives of each organisation," said Delphi chairman and CEO Steve Miller in the statement.

"As we have said before, we remain committed to reaching a consensual agreement. This deadline should provide us sufficient time to deal with the complexities inherent in fashioning practical and workable solutions, and an effective agreement that works for all of us," Miller added.

In a statement, the United Auto Workers said: "We have said consistently that the only basis of finding satisfactory resolution to these matters is through the use of the collective bargaining process with Delphi, GM and the UAW at the bargaining table.

"In recent weeks the parties have held several such meetings. While there are many significant issues to be resolved, Delphi's decision to delay the filing of the Sections 1113 and 1114 motions provides the opportunity for that process to work and is certainly a positive action."