Republican Shorten meets royal couple

Bill Shorten may be a staunch republican but he didn't show it when he met the Duke and Duchess of Sussex.

The opposition leader, who has vowed to give Australians a vote on whether to become a republic if he becomes prime minister, said it was a "privilege" to meet the couple at Admiralty House on Friday.

"It was a privilege for Chloe and me to meet the Duke and Duchess of Sussex this afternoon to discuss their visit to Australia, including the Invictus Games, and their great work in youth mental health," he tweeted after the visit.

Mr Shorten's wife, Chloe, wore a short-sleeve green lace dress to the engagement, while Meghan stayed in the navy midi dress with a light blue trim by London-based label Roksanda that she had changed into earlier.

"There's a lot going on," Prince Harry admitted when Mr Shorten asked about the couple's busy schedule.

The royals also met with Prime Minister Scott Morrison and his wife Jenny at Kirribilli House next door.

"This is such a lovely spot," Prince Harry told the prime minister, who does not want Australia to become a republic.

"It's not bad," Mr Morrison joked.

The Morrison's young daughters, Abbey and Lily, waited in a nearby room, no doubt in the hope they'd get to meet a real-life princess.

The royal couple told the prime minister and his wife that they were excited to visit Fiji in the coming days.

"There's about 300,000 Fijians who live in Sydney," Mr Morrison told them.

The intimate engagement was a welcome distraction for the prime minister, who faces a hung-parliament if his party doesn't hold the seat of Wentworth in Saturday's by-election.

Media were only allowed access to about two minutes of the respective meetings, which were the couple's final engagements for the day, having already visited Bondi Beach and Macarthur Girls School in Parramatta.

Earlier in the afternoon, Harry also climbed the Harbour Bridge with Mr Morrison to raise the Invictus Games flag - the major reason for the royal visit.

Prince Harry's Invictus Games brings together wounded and ill veterans from 18 countries for a Paralympic-style competition featuring 11 adaptive sports ranging from wheelchair rugby to swimming and athletics.

On Saturday, the couple will watch the Invictus Games driving challenge at Cockatoo Island and attend a welcome reception held by NSW Premier Gladys Berejiklian, before the opening ceremony at the Sydney Opera House.

High-profile guests including David and Victoria Beckham are expected to miss the ceremony but will arrive in Sydney soon.

Australian Associated Press