Chris Hipkins and Anthony Albanese deny citizenship changes for Kiwis in Australia will lead to New Zealand brain drain

After making it easier for Kiwis living in Australia to get citizenship, Prime Minister Chris Hipkins has celebrated with a sausage sizzle with Australian Prime Minister Anthony Albanese.

But the move has led to concerns it'll lead to another brain drain of Kiwis - though both leaders reject that will happen.

On Saturday, Albanese made the historic decision to make citizenship for Kiwis easier, correcting two decades of pain. It means in a few months, Kiwis living in Australia for over four years will be able to go straight to citizenship without needing to be a resident.

"New Zealanders who are here in Australia paying taxes, contributing to the economy should be treated with respect and that's what this provision will do," Albanese said.

"I am very pleased to provide the benefits that citizenship provides."

But Albanese told Newshub he didn't do it to sweeten the Australian offerings to Kiwi workers.

"We welcome all of your smartest and brightest, but I've never met a Kiwi who wasn't smart and bright," he said.

Hipkins added the changes are "fundamentally a question of fairness".

But some in the teaching sector in New Zealand are worried it may mean more teachers move to Australia.

"Younger teachers especially have been telling us for some time that the vastly superior pay and conditions on offer in Australia have been attracting teachers over there," said Kieran Gainsford, Post Primary Teachers' Association spokesperson.

But both prime ministers deny there will be a Kiwi brain drain.

"I am absolutely confident that New Zealanders living and making a life in New Zealand will want to stay in the home of the All Blacks, and the true home of the pavlova and the lamington," Hipkins said.

"I don't think it will lead to more people from New Zealand coming to Australia. It will just mean that they're treated better when they're here," Albanese added.

Hipkins was being treated pretty well already during his Australia trip.

"On a personal level, I can say we get on very, very well. We share many interests in common and being able to enjoy a bit of a snag off the barbie is definitely something that we both enjoyed," Hipkins said.

Albo and Chippy - a burgeoning prime ministerial bromance.