The Cook Islands government has contracted a firm to do millions of dollars worth of repairs on its trademark water project.
Te Mato Vai is to provide clean water access across Rarotonga but last year the government said 17km of pipeline by a Chinese contractor needed replacing.
China Civil Engineering Construction Corporation has denied the pipeline is faulty.
However, the government is mulling legal action against the company and pushing ahead with $US9 million in repairs.
Finance Minister Mark Brown said local firm Land Holdings would do the work.
"We're hoping to have the work completed before the full commissioning of the new water system. The intakes are in the final stages of their construction and they'll be going through testing very shortly."
Mr Brown won't rule out future work with the Chinese contractor.
"The government has worked with other companies that it has had difficulties with in the past, and we have worked with them again in the future. So I wouldn't rule out any future government entering into any engagements with this particular company," he said.