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Hazelwood workers brace for closure news

AAP logoAAP 2/11/2016 Melissa Meehan

Workers at Victoria's Hazelwood coal-fired power station are bracing for bad news with the plant's French owner Engie believed to be hours away from confirming its closure.

Staff members have been told to arrive at 10am and are expected to be told operations will cease in March.

This means at least 700 people will be out work in Victoria's LaTrobe Valley, an area already suffering high unemployment.

Federal industry minister Greg Hunt says the government will announce a funding package to support the community, workers and families once the announcement is made.

"I am deeply concerned for the workers and the Latrobe Valley community, this will be an enormous blow to them," he told ABC Radio on Thursday.

"The federal government has been preparing a contingency in case ... The focus, the concern has absolutely been on the workers, on the community."

Mr Hunt wasn't willing to to quantify the level of government support.

But Resources Minister Josh Frydenberg is expected to make a related announcement after the closure is confirmed.

Victorian Treasurer Tim Pallas has said the government would provide a $40 million adjustment package.

The state government has also acknowledged electricity prices would like rise as a result of the closure.

The Hazelwood Power Plant provides up to 25 per cent of Victoria's energy requirements and 5.4 per cent of Australia's energy demand.

The ABC is also reporting workers at Loy Yang B power station will be briefed at midday about a possible sell-off.

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