A trade analyst believes negotiations for a Pacific-wide trade deal could be still completed by the end of the year, despite a setback in the United States.
The Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) is on hold while the US Congress decides whether it will authorise President Obama to conclude the negotiations.
Many of the other 11 other nations in the TPP talks will not agree on a deal without the fast track approval, as Congress could then unpick any agreement.
The International Business Forum's executive director Stephen Jacobi said after so many years of negotiation, any delay was a setback.
"The fact of the matter is that ministers haven't been able to meet in Guam as they wanted to, that there's going to have to be further meetings, the process is going to be extended.
"But it's not the end of the story either, because the Senate has already passed a version of that Trade Promotion Authority and now it's going to the House of Representatives, where it'll have a much more difficult, even more difficult, discussion.
"So the way forward is by no means clear, but the machinery is still working."
Mr Jacobi did not think a timeframe could be put on the negotiations.
"I think we've had so many deadlines, so many prospects, we thought that the negotiation was close to conclusion last year, it didn't eventuate, the thought now is it has to be finished before the US presidential election timetable gets underway, but really they've started that process already in the United States.
"There's still a possibility that the negotiation could be completed by the end of the year, if the president gets his negotiating authority, but that may even extend into next year some time, I think it's really hard to call at this point."
Mr Jacobi, who spoke at the Primary Industry Summit in Wellington yesterday, was calling on the Government to release more information around the deal so the public had a better understanding off what the TPP was about.