Jacinda Ardern meets with Prince William, invites him to come to New Zealand

Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern has met with Prince William in London and extended an invitation for a Royal visit to New Zealand.

On the last day of her Europe trip, Ardern met privately with UK leaders including Prince William, British Labour leader Sir Keir Starmer and deputy leader Angela Rayner. The Prime Minister also had a phone call with Prince Charles and on Friday she had lunch with UK Prime Minister Boris Johnson.

Ardern came to her meeting at Kensington Palace bearing gifts. She gave the Duke of Cambridge a Women's Rugby World Cup jersey and rugby ball, ahead of the competition kicking off in October. 

She also left a copy of one of her favourite children's books 'Tulip and Doug: a Spud-Tacular Friendship Story' for William and Kate's three children. The book is about a young girl and her pet potato.

Jacinda Ardern meets with Prince William, invites him to come to New Zealand
Photo credit: Facebook/Jacinda Ardern

After the meeting, Ardern told NZ media Prince William has a "very close relationship with New Zealand". But she didn't reveal whether any Royal visits to NZ were in the works, saying those announcements would be made by the Royal household.

Ardern wasn't able to meet with the Queen, likely due to her old age, but the trip was jam-packed with meetings with leaders from around the world.

The trip was a perfect opportunity for Ardern to meet with many European leaders, as well as catching up with leaders from Japan, Australia and South Korea at the NATO summit. 

She said some leaders had expressed their interest in visiting New Zealand and she extended invitations to all.

In particular, Ardern said she would love to reciprocate the hospitality of the Spanish Prime Minister Pedro Sánchez while she was in Madrid.

"It's fair to say there are invitations that we've placed, given we'd love to welcome any number [of leaders]," Ardern said.

Ardern left Europe on Saturday evening and will stop in Australia for four days on her way back to NZ to promote trade and tourism opportunities. 

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