Malcolm Turnbull laughs off his Trump impersonation

Australian Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull has laughed off a leaked video of a charity event where he imitated Donald Trump, saying he was just having a bit of fun.

Mr Turnbull spoke frankly and humorously to journalists, lobbyists and fellow politicians at Wednesday's annual Midwinter Ball, which is considered an off-the-record event for charity.

But a video from the night of Mr Turnbull at the podium doing his best impersonation of the US President has leaked.

"We are winning in the polls, we are, we are. Not the fake polls, not the fake polls - they're the ones we're not wining in. We're winning in the real polls - you know, the online polls," he said copying the President's signature 'okay' hand gestures.

Malcolm Turnbull laughs off his Trump impersonation
Photo credit: Supplied

"They're so easy to win. I know that, did you know that? I kind of know that. They are so easy to win. I have this Russian guy, believe me, it's true. It is true."

Mr Turnbull played down his imitation of 'The Don' on Channel 7's The Morning Show on Friday, saying the whole event is meant to be light-hearted.

"I think everyone's got a sense of humour. The Midwinter ball is a great occasion, it is meant to be off the record, but we send each other up, we send ourselves up, my speech was in that tradition - very affectionate, very light hearted, and very Australian."

He says his impersonation got "mixed reviews", but achieved its goal of entertaining the crowd and helping to raise money for charity.

"It was a good night, we were having a laugh. Everyone says politicians are too serious, too scripted, so you've got to lighten up right? It's Australia."

He said he made himself the "butt of my own joke", saying he was referring to his own poll ratings which have him above Opposition leader Bill Shorten in the popularity stakes.

It's the latest in the seemingly awkward relationship between the two world leaders. The first time the pair officially spoke in Mr Trump's first days in office, the President reportedly hung up on Mr Turnbull over a "dumb" refugee deal between the two countries.

At the pair's first in-person meeting in May, Mr Trump called the report "a little bit of fake news".

Mr Turnbull had to wait around three hours after their meeting was delayed because Mr Trump was held up by another engagement.