US secretary of state Antony Blinken is in Paris as the Biden administration seeks to repair damage to relations caused by excluding America's oldest ally from a new Indo-Pacific security initiative.

Mr Blinken met French foreign minister Jean-Yves Le Drian and was to see President Emmanuel Macron's national security adviser later in a bid to restore trust between the countries.

The US diplomat and Mr Le Drian began the meeting with a private "walking tour" of the Quai d'Orsay, the French foreign ministry headquarters, before sitting down for formal talks with senior aides.

The two exchanged pleasantries with Mr Blinken saying "it's a pleasure to be here", but neither responded to questions from reporters.

The Biden administration has acknowledged that last month's announcement of a three-way Indo-Pacific agreement between Australia, Britain and the US known as Aukus was handled poorly.

But it has also signalled a desire to make amends even while suggesting France's rage is an overreaction.

France responded with fury to the announcement that also scuttled a multibillion-dollar submarine contract it had with Australia, and briefly recalled its ambassadors to Washington and Canberra.

French officials called it a stab in the back by allies and have said it will take much time and work to overcome. France has also said it underscores the need for Europe to develop its own security and defence plans.

Ahead of Tuesday's meetings, Mr Le Drian's office reiterated that the "crisis" involves more than just France and was a snub to the broader European Union of which Britain is no longer a member.

The foreign ministry said it involves "the interests of all Europeans regarding the functioning of our alliances and the engagement of Europeans in the Indo-Pacific".

Mr Blinken is in the French capital for a two-day international economic conference that has been overshadowed by the Aukus controversy that erupted on September 15 with the announcement of the project.

Ahead of his visit, Mr Blinken met on Friday with French ambassador Philippe Etienne on his return to Washington after having been recalled to Paris by Mr Macron.

Mr Blinken, a fluent French speaker who grew up and went to high school in Paris, has expressed disappointment that France has reacted so harshly to Aukus.

He and others have suggested some degree of French anger is related to domestic French politics and the shifting dynamics within the EU, which will soon see Angela Merkel depart as the leader of Germany after 16 years in power.

Mr Blinken's visit follows a phone call on September 22 between US President Joe Biden and Mr Macron, who have agreed to try to calm matters and are due to meet in Europe later this month.

The ostensible reason for Mr Blinken's trip to France, which had been planned well before the Aukus row, is to co-chair a ministerial meeting of the Paris-based Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development on Tuesday and Wednesday about climate change and security.

Former secretary of state and current US climate envoy John Kerry will also attend the Paris talks, which will take place just weeks before the next UN-backed international conference on climate, in Glasgow.