PM arrives in Australia for flying visit

By Greg Ansley

New Zealand Prime Minister John Key signs the visitors book, watched by the Australian Prime Minister Tony Abbott, at the Australian War Memorial in Canberra. Photo / SNPA
New Zealand Prime Minister John Key signs the visitors book, watched by the Australian Prime Minister Tony Abbott, at the Australian War Memorial in Canberra. Photo / SNPA

Prime Minister John Key has arrived in Canberra for a flying visit with his new Australian counterpart, Tony Abbott.

Mr Key is the first foreign leader to meet Mr Abbott in Australia, and will hold brief talks expected to focus on refugees and trade.

The issue of discrimination against expatriate Kiwis who arrived in Australia after February 2001, which denies them access to most government support and welfare programmes, could also be raised.

Mr Abbott sandwiched Mr Key's visit between his return from talks with Indonesian President Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono in Jakarta on Monday and his return to Bali later in the week for the Apec Summit.

The Australian leader has also been heavily engaged in launching his political agenda, including the conservative Government's hard-line policy on asylum seekers and the axing of Labor's carbon and mining taxes.

Mr Key arrived at Fairbairn air force base and drove to the Australian War Memorial for a wreath-laying ceremony with Mr Abbott.

The leaders then drove to Parliament House for bilateral talks.

- NZ Herald

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