The Trump Administration & US - Indo-Pacific Relations

This resource will track statements, developments, visits, and other interactions in US-Indo-Pacific relations under the President Trump administration. Special focus will be given to the comments and activities of President Donald J. Trump; Vice President Mike Pence; United States Trade Representative Ambassador Robert E. Lighthizer; Secretary of Defense Dr. Mark Esper; Secretary of State Mike Pompeo; Secretary of Commerce Wilbur Ross, Jr.; and (former) Secretary of Defense James Mattis.

Methodology

Pinned Posts

Secretary Pompeo’s Call with Singaporean Foreign Minister Balakrishnan

"Secretary of State Michael R. Pompeo spoke today with Singaporean Foreign Minister Vivian Balakrishnan. Secretary Pompeo reiterated U.S. support for Southeast Asian states upholding their sovereign rights and interests under international law, and he underscored U.S. opposition to PRC efforts to use coercion to push its unlawful South China Sea maritime claims. Secretary Pompeo and Foreign Minister Balakrishnan also discussed the importance of our longstanding partnership and ways to expand our cooperation further, including in ASEAN and its related fora."

Secretary Pompeo’s Call with Indonesian Foreign Minister Marsudi

"Secretary of State Michael R. Pompeo spoke with Indonesian Foreign Minister Retno Marsudi today about the continued, strong U.S.-Indonesia Strategic Partnership and the two countries’ shared goal of respect for international law in the South China Sea. Secretary Pompeo and Foreign Minister Marsudi highlighted the importance of increased public health and economic cooperation to rebuild our economies and keep the region safe."

On the Chinese Communist Party’s Extra-Territorial Authoritarianism

"The Chinese Communist Party cannot tolerate the free thinking of its own people, and increasingly is trying to extend its reach outside China’s borders. In the latest example, Chinese authorities have reportedly issued arrest warrants for six pro-democracy advocates resident outside of China, including a U.S. citizen. The United States and other free nations will continue to protect our peoples from the long arm of Beijing’s authoritarianism."

Readout of Secretary Esper’s Phone Call with Indonesian Minister of Defense Prabowo Subianto

"Today, Secretary of Defense Dr. Mark T. Esper spoke on the phone with his Indonesian counterpart, Minister of Defense Prabowo Subianto, to discuss U.S. and Indonesian military cooperation in the age of COVID-19. Secretary Esper and Minister Prabowo discussed maritime security, defense acquisitions, and military exercises. Both the Secretary and Minister Prabowo conveyed their desire to meet in-person soon.

Both leaders expressed concern for those that COVID-19 has affected in the United States and Indonesia. Minister Prabowo thanked the American people for providing ventilators…

Secretary Pompeo At a Press Availability - China and Taiwan

"Now, turning to my remarks: I want to start, as I often do, with a few items on Communist China.

Since I was last here, the world has witnessed more examples of CCP efforts to coerce and control its citizens. Other nations and the U.S. have put out a number of statements.

We see it in Hong Kong, where authorities have delayed legislative elections, arrested pro-democracy activists, issued warrants for freedom-loving foreigners, including an American. I urge U.S. citizens to exercise increased caution while traveling…

President Trump's Interview with Fox Business' Lou Dobbs - China

Readout of Secretary Esper's Telephone Call with the People's Republic of China's Minister of National Defense General Wei Fenghe

"On August 6, 2020, Secretary of Defense Mark T. Esper held a telephone call with the People’s Republic of China (PRC) Minister of National Defense, General Wei Fenghe.

Secretary Esper called for greater PRC transparency on COVID, expressed concern about PRC destabilizing activity in the vicinity of Taiwan and the South China Sea, and called on the PRC to honor international obligations under the principles of the 1984 Sino-British Joint Declaration. Secretary Esper communicated the importance that the PRC abide by international laws, rules…

Singapore National Day

"On behalf of the Government of the United States and the American people, I congratulate and extend our warm regards to the people of Singapore as you celebrate your National Day.

Singapore is a longstanding partner and friend of the United States in the Indo-Pacific region, and since the establishment of diplomatic relations between us, we have nurtured and enjoyed a close economic and security relationship. Our shared values of stability, prosperity, and the rule of law continue to anchor our dynamic and growing cooperation…

Secretary Pompeo’s Call with Philippine Secretary of Foreign Affairs Locsin

"Secretary of State Michael R. Pompeo spoke today with Philippine Secretary of Foreign Affairs Teodoro Locsin, Jr. Secretary Pompeo and Secretary Locsin discussed the recent change in U.S. policy on maritime claims in the South China Sea, U.S. support for Southeast Asian coastal states upholding their sovereign rights and interests consistent with international law, and opportunities for further U.S.-Philippine maritime cooperation. The two secretaries also discussed the strong economic, security, and people-to-people ties that bind our two countries."

Secretary Michael R. Pompeo’s Call with Indian External Affairs Minister S. Jaishankar

"Secretary of State Michael R. Pompeo spoke today with Indian Minister of External Affairs Dr. S. Jaishankar to discuss ongoing bilateral and multilateral cooperation on issues of international concern, including efforts to combat the COVID-19 pandemic, support the peace process in Afghanistan, and address recent destabilizing actions in the region. Secretary Pompeo and Minister Jaishankar reiterated the strength of the United States-India relationship to advance peace, prosperity, and security in the Indo-Pacific and around the globe. Both leaders agreed to continue close cooperation on a…

The 53rd Anniversary of the Founding of the Association of Southeast Asian Nations

"On behalf of the Government of the United States of America, I am pleased to congratulate the ten member states of the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) and the ASEAN Secretariat on the 53rd anniversary of the founding of ASEAN on August 8. For decades, ASEAN has fostered a more stable, prosperous, and peaceful region. ASEAN and ASEAN-led mechanisms are at the heart of the U.S. vision for the Indo-Pacific and that of our allies and partners. The strategic partnership between the United States…

Secretary Pompeo’s Call with Vietnamese Deputy Prime Minister and Foreign Minister Minh

"Secretary of State Michael R. Pompeo spoke today with Vietnamese Deputy Prime Minister and Foreign Minister Pham Binh Minh. Secretary Pompeo and Deputy Prime Minister and Foreign Minister Minh reaffirmed the strength of our Comprehensive Partnership as we celebrate a quarter century of U.S-Vietnam diplomatic relations in 2020. The Secretary underscored U.S. support for Southeast Asian coastal states upholding their sovereign rights and interests under international law and the importance of a free and open Indo-Pacific. The Secretary thanked Vietnam for its leadership as ASEAN…

Secretary Pompeo’s Call with Malaysian Foreign Minister Hishammuddin

"Secretary of State Michael R. Pompeo spoke with Malaysian Foreign Minister Hishammuddin Hussein today to discuss our strong U.S.-Malaysia Comprehensive Partnership and our two countries’ shared respect for international law and the rules-based maritime order in the South China Sea. Secretary Pompeo and Foreign Minister Hishammuddin also discussed our continued economic and health-related cooperation in the wake of the COVID-19 pandemic."

Text of a Letter to the Speaker of the House and President of the Senate on Addressing the Threat Posed by WeChat

"Dear Madam Speaker: (Dear Mr. President:)

Pursuant to the International Emergency Economic Powers Act (50 U.S.C. 1701 et seq.) (IEEPA), the National Emergencies Act (50 U.S.C. 1601 et seq.), and section 301 of title 3, United States Code, I hereby report that I have issued an Executive Order (the “order”) that takes additional steps to deal with the national emergency with respect to the information and communications technology and services supply chain declared in Executive Order 13873 of May 15, 2019 (Securing the Information and…

Text of a Letter to the Speaker of the House and President of the Senate on Addressing the Threat Posed by TikTok

"Dear Madam Speaker: (Dear Mr. President:)

Pursuant to the International Emergency Economic Powers Act (50 U.S.C. 1701 et seq.) (IEEPA), the National Emergencies Act (50 U.S.C. 1601 et seq.), and section 301 of title 3, United States Code, I hereby report that I have issued an Executive Order (the “order”) that takes additional steps to deal with the national emergency with respect to the information and communications technology and services supply chain declared in Executive Order 13873 of May 15, 2019 (Securing the Information and…

Executive Order on Addressing the Threat Posed by WeChat

"By the authority vested in me as President by the Constitution and the laws of the United States of America, including the International Emergency Economic Powers Act (50 U.S.C. 1701 et seq.) (IEEPA), the National Emergencies Act (50 U.S.C. 1601 et seq.), and section 301 of title 3, United States Code,

I, DONALD J. TRUMP, President of the United States of America, find that additional steps must be taken to deal with the national emergency with respect to the information and communications technology and services…

Executive Order on Addressing the Threat Posed by TikTok

"By the authority vested in me as President by the Constitution and the laws of the United States of America, including the International Emergency Economic Powers Act (50 U.S.C. 1701 et seq.) (IEEPA), the National Emergencies Act (50 U.S.C. 1601 et seq.), and section 301 of title 3, United States Code,

I, DONALD J. TRUMP, President of the United States of America, find that additional steps must be taken to deal with the national emergency with respect to the information and communications technology and services…

Joint Statement on the Erosion of Rights in Hong Kong

"We the Foreign Ministers of Australia, Canada, New Zealand, and the United Kingdom, and the United States Secretary of State are gravely concerned by the Hong Kong government’s unjust disqualification of candidates and disproportionate postponement of Legislative Council elections. These moves have undermined the democratic process that has been fundamental to Hong Kong’s stability and prosperity.

We express deep concern at Beijing’s imposition of the new National Security Law, which is eroding the Hong Kong people’s fundamental rights and liberties.

We support the legitimate expectations…

The United States Designates Individuals in Hong Kong for Curtailing Promised Freedoms

"The Chinese Communist Party has made clear that Hong Kong will never again enjoy the high degree of autonomy that Beijing itself promised to the Hong Kong people and the United Kingdom for 50 years. President Trump has made clear that the United States will therefore treat Hong Kong as “one country, one system,” and take action against individuals who have crushed the Hong Kong people’s freedoms.

Today, the United States designates 11 individuals pursuant to Executive Order (E.O.) 13936. These individuals include Carrie Lam…

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Secretary Pompeo and Uzbekistan Foreign Minister Abdulaziz Kamilov at a Press Availability - China

"QUESTION: Good morning. Thank you. Mr. Secretary, congratulations to the Chiefs.

SECRETARY POMPEO: Thank you.

QUESTION: Even if they are from Missouri and not Kansas. (Laughter.)

Secondly, since the beginning of this trip, and in fact for months, in fact since you’ve been Secretary, you have spoken at great length about the threats that you see, concerns about Chinese investment, Chinese influence, particularly 5G within Huawei and the 5G networks. And I am wondering: Is there a particular concern in Central Asia about that given…

Sri Lanka’s Independence Day

"On behalf of the people of the United States, I send my best wishes to Sri Lanka as you celebrate the 72nd anniversary of your independence on February 4.

Our relationship is based on common democratic values, and the United States steadfastly supports Sri Lanka’s vibrant democracy and its sovereignty. We share a commitment to a free and open Indo-Pacific region that ensures peace, economic growth, security, democracy, and human rights for the advancement of our peoples. I look forward to deepening our ties in…

President Trump's Interview with Fox News - China

Secretary Pompeo With Aigerim Toleukhanova of Radio Azattyq -China

"QUESTION: Mr. Secretary, thank you for visiting Kazakhstan. Let’s start with the first question: Xinjiang. The U.S. Government has banned a number of companies and officials tied to abuses in there. Meanwhile, Kazakhstan and other countries whose very ethnic minorities are trapped in Xinjiang say that these are internal issues of China. Are you concerned with that? How – what are you telling President Tokayev about problems in Xinjiang?

SECRETARY POMPEO: Well, thanks for having me on your show today. I appreciate that. The United…

Secretary Pompeo And Kazakhstani Foreign Minister Mukhtar Tileuberdi - China

"Before I speak to our meeting today, I wanted to say a word or two about the work that the United States is doing to help Kazakhstan in dealing with the coronavirus. As of yesterday early evening, there were 46 potential cases under investigation here in Kazakhstan. Quick action to stop the spread of the virus has been incredibly impressive. The fact that your country shares roughly 1,100 miles, almost 1,800 kilometers, with China was obviously a cause for concern, and so you acted.

But…

President Trump Holds Rally in Des Moines, Iowa - China

Secretary Michael Pompeo With Iain Dale of LBC Radio - China

"QUESTION: Another bone of contention between our two countries, obviously, Huawei. You’ve been talking about that today. On a scale of one to ten, how disappointed were you with the decision that was announced on Tuesday?

SECRETARY POMPEO: It’s a great question, one I’m not going to answer.

QUESTION: I knew you wouldn’t. (Laughter.)

SECRETARY POMPEO: Look, we’ve said we were disappointed. We view the intrusion of the Chinese Communist Party into information technology systems as a very grave risk – a national security risk…

Secretary of Defense Esper and Minister of Defense Lorenzo Guerini of Italy Joint Press Briefing - China

"Q (THROUGH TRANSLATOR): [...] And, Secretary Esper, have you reaffirmed the concerns of your administration for the implementation of the 5G plan in Italy, also on the basis of the decisions taken by London, which have not been preceded in Washington? [...]

SEC. ESPER: Regarding your question on 5G, the United States remains very concerned about Chinese technology in our networks, specifically Huawei. The concern I've expressed to our allies on multiple occasions, particularly during my visits to NATO defense ministerials in -- in Brussels, was…

United States Welcomes the EU’s Acknowledgement of the Unacceptable Risks Posed by Untrusted 5G Suppliers - China

"On January 29, the European Union (EU) Network Information Security Cooperation Group released a toolbox of recommended measures to mitigate security risks in 5G networks. The United States welcomes this initiative from Member States, the Commission, and the EU Cybersecurity Agency.

The Toolbox acknowledges that suppliers with high risk profiles (e.g., companies based in third countries that lack democratic checks and balances) should face additional restrictions. It calls on EU member states to exclude high risk suppliers from critical and sensitive parts of their 5G…

Secretary Pompeo and British Foreign Secretary Dominic Raab Discussion on the Future of the Special Relationship - China

MR GODSON: In terms of threat in the world today, when you look at great power competition, the sort of talk once again, your history has not come to an end. Rise of China – how does the Special Relation change in the context, from your point of view, in the context of new world threats of China, Russia, and so on? Perhaps not so new.

SECRETARY POMPEO: So I’ll speak to this a little bit from the American perspective and our recent history on…