The hunt for missing Malaysia Airlines flight MH370 is likely to be suspended if the aircraft is not found in the current search area.
Officials from China, Malaysia and Australia confirmed the search will reach a hiatus if an area of the southern Indian Ocean currently under investigation reveals no further information.
The plane, with 239 passengers and crew, disappeared in March 2014.
A statement from the three nations, released after a meeting in Malaysia, said “the likelihood of finding the aircraft is fading”.
With less than 10,000 square kilometres of the search area remaining, it appears the operation is coming to an end.
This is against the wishes of many of the relatives of those on-board the plane who have long urged for the search to continue until the Boeing 777 is located.
“In the absence of new credible evidence, Malaysia, Australia and China have collectively agreed to suspend the search upon completion of the 120,000-km search,” Malaysian transport minister Liow Tiong Lai explained.
Costing more than £100 million, the search is the most expensive in aviation history.
While several pieces of Boeing 777 debris have washed up along the east coast of Africa, nothing related to MH370 has been found in the area.
MH370 is the only missing Boeing 777 in the world.