Treasurer defends PM meeting with tycoon

Treasurer Jim Chalmers expects the prime minister will declare a private helicopter trip to a lunch with a business chief "in the usual way".

Mr Albanese was flown in Lindsay Fox's private helicopter for a meeting at his Portsea mansion on Saturday, which was also attended by Victorian Labor Premier Dan Andrews, Nine newspapers reported.

The meeting came after the prime minister finished a media conference in Geelong and before flying to Western Australia to inspect flood damage.

The newspapers reported Mr Albanese had lunch with the logistics industry leader and had a swim.

Mr Fox is understood to be seeking to develop his private Avalon airport into an intermodal transport hub, which would likely require Victorian and federal government assistance.

As of Friday morning, the trip had not been declared on the parliamentary register of interests.

Dr Chalmers said it was "entirely appropriate" the prime minister spent time talking to business leaders and properly declared it.

"A trip like that gets declared in the usual way on the usual time frame and I think it's important that we engage with all parts of the Australian community, including business leaders," he told ABC TV on Friday.

Responding to criticism from deputy opposition leader Sussan Ley, Dr Chalmers said: "The Liberal party has to decide should we engage with business leaders more or less, because they say both of those things at once and they've got to pick one."

When asked about the meeting, Mr Albanese told reporters on Wednesday: "I have private meetings all the time. And I have private meetings which are private meetings."

Ms Ley has called for the prime minister - who is on a trip to Papua New Guinea - to disclose what was discussed and say why a private helicopter was needed for what was a "reasonably short car trip".

She told 5AA radio on Friday there were also questions over whether the lunch was the main reason for Mr Albanese to be in Victoria that day, rather than government business.

"We don't know whether the visit to Geelong was set up in order to create that opportunity and we don't know whether the discussions related to things that are in the public interest," she said.

"He's hiding from questions about this. That means he's not being transparent."

Mr Andrews described it as a "private, social event - a barbecue", but took a car to the house.