Storm forces PM to land at Hobart

Strong winds have forced Prime Minister Tony Abbott to abandon his visit to Launceston this morning.

Mr Abbott's RAAF aircraft circled Launceston Airport several times before heading for Hobart at about 11am.

He was due at Launceston Town Hall for a quarterly economic forum meeting with Premier Will Hodgman and business leaders.

Treasurer Joe Hockey was also due at the meeting, which is now expected to proceed via video link between Launceston and Hobart.

The leaders were expected to tick off on plans for Bass Strait shipping and discuss other issues such as rail, port and road projects.

Yesterday Mr Hockey told The Examiner he would encourage the state government to sell its energy utilities and qualify for the Federal government's 15 per cent Asset Recycling Fund.

He said if the energy utilities sold for $4 billion the Commonwealth would contribute $600 million towards the proceeds windfall.


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