The major Apec international summit set to be held in New Zealand next year could be postponed for at least a year due to the global Covid-19 crisis.
But even with a delay until 2022, the "mega-event" still could not be held at the SkyCity Convention Centre with its completion date now pushed out until 2025 due to the pandemic.
Trade and Export Growth Minister David Parker said Malaysia, this year's host, had requested it continue its duties into 2021 to could fully complete its hosting year.
"But no final decision has been made and any changes would need to be agreed by all Apec economies."
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If approved, the deferral would have a knock-on effect for New Zealand which was due to host the summit next year.
With up to 22,000 participants, including leaders, ministers and media, Apec 2021 was set to be the largest event ever hosted by the Government.
The year-long summit culminates in leaders' week which was originally set to be held in November at Auckland's SkyCity International Convention Centre.
But the Government started shopping around for new venues at the start of the year when it became apparent the impact of massive fire last year meant it wouldn't be finished in time.
It then suffered another setback with SkyCity announcing in May the Covid-19 pandemic had affected the construction industry and was likely to impact such a large project "for some time to come".
The deadline for completion was pushed out until January 2, 2025 - five years after its original completion date.
In the announcement to the NZX about the delay, SkyCity said it had agreed with the Government Covid-19 was a "force majeure" event.
"SkyCity will continue to work with Fletcher Construction to complete the project as soon as possible which will hopefully be well within the extended timeframe."
Other venues being considered are the Aotea Centre has capacity for more than 2100 seats in its ASB theatre or the War Memorial Museum and the Town Hall which were both used when New Zealand last hosted the summit in 1999.
Due to its scale, complexity and cost, the summit is considered a "mega-event" by Mfat.
The Government is in the process of passing the Asia Pacific Economic Co-operation 2021 Bill to give police extra powers to secure the event.
Some of the temporary powers include allowing police to secure a venue, close roads, restrict marine areas and draw on members of the New Zealand Defence Force to bolster their ranks.