The future of TPP has been thrown into doubt after Canada's sudden refusal to attend the final leaders' meeting in Danang, Vietnam, which was then cancelled.
The 10 other leaders including Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern turned up expecting Canada to be present at 8pm NZ time.
Instead they found Japan's Prime Minister, Shinzo Abe, holding crisis meetings with Canada's Justin Trudeau over an undisclosed issue.
Abe returned to the room saying Trudeau was not attending and so the meeting was abandoned by the other countries, Australia, New Zealand, Singapore, Brunei, Malaysia, Chile, Peru, Mexico and Vietnam.
It will be extremely difficult to find any more time during the Apec summit to take the issue further.
That leaves trying to restart negotiations at a later time, possibly next year, exploring the possibility of TPP without Canada or ditching it altogether.
Ardern told New Zealand reporters that talks had been "postponed" and there was no suggestion of when they would reconvene.
She said she was left with the impression that Canada had withdrawn from the negotiations.
The dramas over Canada are not related to the bizarre events of last night in which the TPP deal was declared done by trade ministers, including Canada's Trade Minister, but Vietnam then objected to a particular issue.
That issue was resolved during the day before the aborted leaders' meeting.
Ardern said she was only be "guessing at this point" whether the developments signalled the end of TPP.
"It is a significantly different deal without Canada in it," she said.
Trade Minister David Parker said all of Canada's issues appeared to have been resolved to their satisfaction last night.
"That seemed to change today."
Parker said New Zealand was surprised at Canada's sudden change of view and it was not the only country in the room that was. He said Australia was too.
Ardern said the news would be disappointing for New Zealand exporters.
"But we can't control the decisions of other countries. No one at the table could."
Ardern is scheduled to meet with Trudeau in the Philippines on Monday or Tuesday at the East Asia Summit.
Asked if US president Donald Trump would get any satisfaction from Canada's actions - given that he withdrew the US from TPP in January - she said leaders were focused on what it meant for their own countries.