For years they traded insults, but Clive Palmer says he and Wayne Swan have since buried the hatchet.

Clive Palmer and former treasurer Wayne Swan have had a rapprochement of sorts, with the multi-billionaire revealing the pair met over coffee when he first came to Canberra.

The voluble Fairfax MP, who had once threatened to run against Mr Swan in his Brisbane seat of Lilley, said the now-Labor backbencher was one of the few people to welcome him to parliament.

“Wayne was the only member in those early days that came round and saw me, and had a cup of coffee with me and wanted to find out things,” Mr Palmer told the National Press Club in Canberra.

After years of trading insults – Mr Palmer once described the former treasurer as “unpatriotic” for his love of Bruce Springsteen – the new Queensland MP said he still disagreed with Mr Swan “nearly on everything”.

“But in politics I think you can’t judge people or demean people for their points of view,” he said.