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From The Collaborative International Dictionary of English v.0.48:
Offing \Off"ing\ ([o^]f"[i^]ng; 115), n. [From Off.] That part of the sea at a good distance from the shore, or where there is deep water and no need of a pilot; also, distance from the shore; as, the ship had ten miles offing; we saw a ship in the offing. [1913 Webster] in the offing (a) coming; arriving in the foreseeable future. (b) visible but not nearby. [PJC]