Anthony Albanese says an Australian republic is a 'discussion for another time'

Australian PM Anthony Albanese spoke to ITV News' Dan Rivers in Sydney

Anthony Albanese has been Australian Prime Minister since May - and made clear during his campaign he believes his country should not have constitutional monarchy.

But following the death of the Queen, who was Australia's official Head of State, he said a planned referendum on becoming a republic will be suspended for at least three years.

In his official residence overlooking Sydney Harbour, Mr Albanese would not be drawn on republican issues, telling ITV News that the question was "a discussion for another time."

He said he believed his "job as prime minister of Australia is to represent Australia at this historic time, and I believe you can have different views, as Australians do, a range of views over our constitutional system.

"But be united in respect for the life of service that Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth showed to Australia, to the Commonwealth and indeed to the world."

The Queen visited Australia many times - seen here in Brisbane in 1954. Credit: PA

Speaking to ITV News, Mr Albanese said he would welcome more royal visits in future.

"What's important right now is that we take the opportunity to express our gratitude for the service of Her Majesty the Queen, that we have welcomed King Charles III - at the same time as people have different views about a way forward in the future, but that is a matter for a future debate," he said.

"We are just paying tribute to Queen Elizabeth at the present time, that's the absolute priority that Australians would expect."

As the new King, Charles III will not just reign over the UK - he is also Head of State for 14 other Commonwealth countries, including New Zealand and Canada.

Mr Albanese said he was not yet anticipating a visit from the King yet.

"We haven't had those discussions," Mr Albanese said. "There have been some preliminary discussions about the now Prince and Princess of Wales visiting Australia."

Prince George, the son of the Prince and Princess of Wales, was described as the "republican slayer" by Australian press, after the tiny royal's 2014 visit was credited for support for republicanism dipping to its lowest level in decades.

"I would hope that if they visit they would bring their children with them," Mr Albanese said.

A man views floral tributes in Melbourne. Credit: PA

The Labor leader had created a Minister for the Republic in his cabinet, appointing Matt Thistlethwaite to the role in June.

Mr Albanese promised his government would prioritise relations with indigenous Australians.

However, he has said he would not be polling Australians on whether to become a republic in his first, three-year term as leader.

Australians narrowly voted to remain in the realm in a 1999 republican referendum.

The final years of the Queen's reign triggered fresh questions about the future of the monarchy in several Commonwealth nations.

Barbados ended its relationship with the Crown to become a republic in 2021, breaking off a 400-year relationship with the monarchy.