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PM elect still working on frontbench -

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TONY EASTLEY: Prime Minister elect, Tony Abbott, has discussed asylum seeker policy with his PNG counterpart, as he continues the transition to government.

Mr Abbott will spend another day in Canberra in briefings with senior public servants and calling state leaders.

The Australian Electoral Commission is continuing to count votes but it could be weeks before the final composition of the new Parliament is known.

From Canberra, Naomi Woodley reports.

NAOMI WOODLEY: Tony Abbott is still working through the process of putting his frontbench together, in consultation with his leadership team.

The Nationals’ Barnaby Joyce has moved from the Senate to the Lower House, but he's still in the dark about his future role.

BARNABY JOYCE: It's a case of that if an office in offered to you, a responsibility is offered to you, you accept it. If it's not offered to you, you don't seek it out and you're happy and content with whatever happens.

Either way, I'll be either a very busy person or an extremely busy person.

NAOMI WOODLEY: To some extent the cabinet formation is being delayed by close results in some seats.

The Liberal frontbencher Sophie Mirabella is on track to be the only Lower House Coalition MP contesting the election to lose her seat. The Independent, Cathy McGowan, is 1,754 votes ahead in the regional Victorian seat of Indi, with just over half the votes counted.

In other Lower House seats, Clive Palmer is almost certain to be the new MP for Fairfax, but his party's candidate in the neighbouring seat of Fisher, is falling behind the LNP's Mal Brough, paving the way for the return to Canberra of the former Howard government minister.

Nonetheless, Mr Palmer's party is likely to have two senators from next July, as part of an 18 strong crossbench.

On Lateline, the former Nationals Senate leader Barnaby Joyce offered some advice to the micro parties.

BARNABY JOYCE: They have the option to go down either the Steve Fielding line or the Xenophon line. One leads to a long career and the other one leads to a short one.

NAOMI WOODLEY: And on Q&A last night, the senior Coalition Senator George Brandis appeared to be getting in early with a conciliatory approach to future negotiations.

GEORGE BRANDIS: It's sometimes refreshing to see that the major parties don't have a complete monopoly on access to the Parliament. The Senate has a proportional representation system which is relatively friendly to the minor parties.

So we so often hear people complain about the major parties are a duopoly that monopolises the system.

NAOMI WOODLEY: He says he quite likes Clive Palmer, and they were members of the Young Liberals together.

GEORGE BRANDIS: He is a serious guy who ought to be taken seriously. And unlike a lot of people in the business community who are, shall we say, fairweather friends, to the free enterprise side of politics, at least he's had the spine to stand up for his beliefs and participate in the political process.

NAOMI WOODLEY: Tony Abbott will continue his discussions with premiers and chief ministers today, and is also expected to receive calls from other world leaders.

He has now spoken to Papua New Guinea's prime minister Peter O'Neill.

A spokesman says they reaffirmed Australia's close relationship with PNG, and the Coalition's strong commitment to the processing of asylum seekers on Manus Island.

TONY EASTLEY: Naomi Woodley.