The Australian Prime Minister told the US Chamber of Commerce: “In most circumstances, we’re strong enough to be useful but not big enough to be threatening.”

He also claimed that Australia was well-placed to act as mediator between the USA and growing power, China, while claiming the country has built Asian relations by offering aid for the recent Philippines typhoon disaster and in the search for flight MH370.

There are already plans for US troops to rotate through Darwin, due to its tactical location.

Discussions are thought to have included global trade issues and the conflicts in Ukraine, Syria and North Korea.

Meanwhile, Abbot has played down rumours that he’ll clash with the President over climate change policies. He is trying to stay on Barack’s good side, after all.

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