Federal Housing Minister Michael Sukkar has refused to say whether he will retire Tasmania's $157 million housing debt to the Commonwealth.
Mr Sukkar will take part in the City of Hobart's homelessness forum in Hobart on Thursday but was tight-lipped on the debt which the Tasmanian Government wants to be written off.
"We will be discussing a range of ways in which the federal government can assist and work co-operatively to support the efforts to alleviate housing and homelessness issues," he said.
Tasmania's housing debt to the Commonwealth stands at $157 million and about $15 million is paid off it each year.
Liberal senator Eric Abetz cautioned against retiring the debt but Premier Will Hodgman hit back arguing it should be written off.
"If Tasmania's debt were to be 'forgiven' does anyone believe the other States wouldn't make a similar request. Why wouldn't they?" Senator Abetz said.
"And there are thousands of millions owed by the states to the Commonwealth. If we are 'forgiven' the debt it doesn't disappear. It is simply transferred to another level of government."
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Senator Abetz said he and his late wife had helped set up women and youth shelters and opened their own home to people needing shelter.
Mr Hodgman said: "We completely disagree with Senator Abetz's view on housing debt and we are continuing to engage with the federal government at the highest levels on the issue.
"We have a long-held position that we want to see historical housing debt retired and Minister Jaensch will again raise this with the federal minister tomorrow."
Senator Abetz said he fully supported social housing and Tasmanians should not suffer because of "the bad behaviour of previous state governments".