Prime Minister Scott Morrison has urged reform of the existing global trade system to ensure the US and China can resolve their differences within the rules rather than taking unilateral action.
The prime minister says he only exchanged "friendly remarks" with US President Donald Trump at commemorations of the 75th anniversary of World War II's D-Day invasions in the UK on Wednesday, a day after he warned that the US-China trade war was "threatening the prosperity of millions".
Mr Morrison said he will continue to advocate for the reform of international institutions like the World Trade Organisation to ensure they can adequately resolve differences between countries.
"This issue as I said yesterday, is having an impact on the global economy and it's in the interest of all states, all nations that this matter is able to be resolved in a positive way," he said.
The prime minister added the US had "legitimate concerns" about intellectual property protections, but he urged the world's two largest economies to resolve their differences within the system rather than take unilateral actions, such as imposing tariffs on each other.
"They raise a lot of genuine issues, but equally we need to work within the rules-based system because that is what has been very important for Australia and other trading nations like Australia, and we want to see that continue, and there's a lot of support for that," he said.
Australian Associated Press