In his strongest indication yet that he is looking to send refugees to Cambodia, Immigration Minister Scott Morrison has warned that the right to resettlement is not a ticket to a better life in a first world country.
His warning has followed recent visits by Mr Morrison and Foreign Minister Julie Bishop to Cambodia, and has fuelled speculation the Abbott government is in negotiations to send asylum seekers on Nauru who are found to be refugees, to the developing country.
Mr Morrison said resettlement was about sending people to places where they would be free from persecution.
"I just don't buy into this argument that only first world countries are able to participate in resettlement," he told Sky News.
Mr Morrison dismissed suggestions Australia would be adding to Cambodia's burden, saying countries in the region who wanted to provide safe havens for refugees would be doing so voluntarily.
Cambodia, a recipient of Australian government aid money, is in the midst of political turmoil.
The country's opposition party has boycotted parliament since the July elections, alleging widespread vote rigging, and its leaders have been charged with inciting civil unrest.
On the domestic front Mr Morrison confirmed he had provided billionaire MP Clive Palmer with a government briefing following unrest at the Manus Island detention centre in February that left one asylum seeker dead.
Mr Palmer is opposed to offshore processing.
His three Palmer United Party senators and Ricky Muir, from the Australian Motoring Enthusiast Party, have formed a voting bloc for the new upper house.
They will wield substantial clout once the balance of power moves to the crossbench from July 1.