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New Prime Minister Anthony Albanese and his British counterpart Boris Johnson have discussed expanding the AUKUS security pact.

The two leaders pair spoke for the first time on Monday while Albanese was flying to Tokyo for the Quad summit, where on Tuesday he will meet US President Joe Biden.

Albanese was said to have reiterated Labor’s strong backing for AUKUS – founded last year by the US, Australia and the UK.

Prime Minister Anthony Albanese and Foreign Minister Penny Wong have travelled to Japan for the Quad summit. (Photo: Alex Ellinghausen) (Nine)

Under the agreement, Australia will acquire technology to build a nuclear-powered submarine fleet.

The AUKUS countries have also flagged closer co-operation in the Indo-Pacific to counter China’s growing assertiveness.

In a tweet, Albanese said he and Johnson had “discussed our shared commitment to AUKUS and to acting on the challenge of climate change”.

According to Downing Street, Johnson suggested broadening the agreement into other areas.

“Discussing AUKUS, the leaders strongly agreed on its vital importance and the exciting opportunities it provided,” the UK prime minister’s office said, in a readout of the call.

“The (UK) Prime Minister said he thought the trilateral grouping could go further together in other domains, where both countries could collaborate for the global good.

“Both leaders agreed there was ‘strong alignment’ on global security, climate change and trade and highlighted the importance of the recently signed free trade agreement.”

9News political editor Chris Uhlmann told Today that Albanese will be treading carefully on his first foreign policy engagement at the Quad meeting.

“It would be an extremely difficult thing to try and manage and particularly on your first and second day in the job,” he said.

“So he will want to tread carefully at this meeting.”

Albanese and Wong will meet with US President Joe Biden, Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi and Japanese Prime Minister Fumio Kishida in Tokyo today for the Quadrilateral Security Dialogue.

UK Prime Minister Boris Johnson congratulated Anthony Albanese on his election victory and discussed expanding the AUKUS alliance. (Getty)

“The relationship with the United States is our most important, along with our relationships in the region and our multilateral commitments as well,” Albanese said yesterday.

Biden on Tuesday launched the Indo-Pacific Economic Framework, a new trade deal with 12 Indo-Pacific nations aimed at strengthening their economies.

His administration says the trade deal is designed to signal US dedication to the contested economic sphere and to address the need for stability in commerce after disruptions caused by the pandemic and Russia’s invasion of Ukraine.

Nations joining the US in the pact are: Australia, Brunei, India, Indonesia, Japan, South Korea, Malaysia, New Zealand, the Philippines, Singapore, Thailand and Vietnam.

Along with the United States, they represent 40 per cent of world GDP.

The countries said in a joint statement that the pact will help them collectively “prepare our economies for the future” after the fallout from the pandemic and the war in Ukraine.

– Reported with Associated Press

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