Panama Canal Administrator Jorge Quijano says the agency has reached tentative agreement on some issues in efforts to resolve a dispute that has halted work on a major expansion plan.

But Quijano also says the Authority might take over the project if no final agreement with the contractors is reached this week. He spoke Wednesday during a chamber of commerce meeting.

The contractors say work has gone $1.6 billion over budget and they have demanded the authority pay.

The dispute has threatened to delay the biggest expansion of the canal since it opened a century ago.