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…

All Posts

Mongolia National Day

"On behalf of the Government of the United States of America, I extend my best wishes to the people of Mongolia on the opening of the Naadam festival on July 11.

As strategic partners and Third Neighbors, the United States and Mongolia enjoy a strong partnership bound by common interests, shared democratic values, and respect for human rights and the rule of law.

On this occasion for celebration, I wish the people of Mongolia a wonderful Naadam."

Secretary Pompeo at a Press Availability - China

"SECRETARY POMPEO: [...] I want to start today with the Chinese Communist Party.

As with all unelected, communist regimes, Beijing fears its own people’s free thinking more than any foreign foe.

We were deeply troubled to learn this week that the CCP detained Xu Zhangrun for criticizing General Secretary Xi Jinping’s repressive regime and the CCP’s mishandling of the COVID-19 pandemic. He should be released. He was simply telling the truth. He should be released as soon as possible.

I’ll repeat a theme I’ve been…

Australia-Japan-United States Defense Ministers’ Meeting Joint Statement

"Australian Minister for Defence Linda Reynolds, Japanese Minister of Defense KONO Taro, and U.S. Secretary of Defense Mark Esper convened a virtual trilateral defense ministerial meeting on July 7 (Washington). The ministers reaffirmed their joint commitment to enhance security, stability, and prosperity in the Indo-Pacific region in keeping with their shared values and longstanding alliances and close partnerships. This was the ninth meeting among the three nations’ defense leaders.

The ministers concurred that the COVID-19 pandemic underscored the importance of a rules-based international order in…

Secretary Esper Message to the Force on Accomplishments in Implementation of the National Defense Strategy - China

"First, one of our top ten goals – the priority that drives and underlies many of our efforts today – is to focus the Department on China. To do this, we established a China Strategy Management Group to push that agenda forward. I also directed the National Defense University to refocus its curriculum by dedicating 50 percent of the coursework to the PRC, and I tasked the Military Departments and Services to make China the pacing threat in all of our schools, programs, and training."

Secretary Pompeo With Laura Ingraham of Fox News - China

"QUESTION: What will their China policy look like? From what you know now, with what Biden believes that the real threat to the United States and the culture wars that are – what can we expect as Americans as a policy toward China if that likelihood would come to pass?

SECRETARY POMPEO: Laura, I think we know because we have eight years of history with President Obama and Vice President Biden’s China policy. They did nothing, whether it was on the important issues we’re facing…

Solomon Islands National Day 

"On behalf of the Government of the United States of America, I congratulate the people of Solomon Islands as you celebrate your National Day on July 7.

While the COVID-19 pandemic means the commemorations will be different this year, the United States looks forward to beginning another year of friendship with Solomon Islands. Our partnership continues to grow as we engage in more cultural and professional exchanges, expand our security cooperation, and execute on our development assistance commitments. The announcement late last year of the…

Secretary Pompeo at a Press Availability - China

Now, turning to the substance of my remarks today, and I want to talk about one of the world’s most unfree countries.

Yesterday the Chinese Communist Party implemented its draconian national security law on Hong Kong, in violation of commitments that it made to the Hong Kong people and to the United Kingdom, in a UN-registered treaty – and in contravention of Hong Kongers’ human rights and fundamental freedoms.

Free Hong Kong was one of the world’s most stable, prosperous, and dynamic cities. Now it…

On Beijing’s Imposition of National Security Legislation on Hong Kong

"The Chinese Communist Party’s decision to impose draconian national security legislation on Hong Kong destroys the territory’s autonomy and one of China’s greatest achievements. Hong Kong demonstrated to the world what a free Chinese people could achieve – one of the most successful economies and vibrant societies in the world. But Beijing’s paranoia and fear of its own people’s aspirations have led it to eviscerate the very foundation of the territory’s success, turning “One Country, Two Systems” into “One Country, One System.”

The CCP’s action…

U.S. Government Ending Controlled Defense Exports to Hong Kong

"The Chinese Communist Party’s decision to eviscerate Hong Kong’s freedoms has forced the Trump Administration to re-evaluate its policies toward the territory. As Beijing moves forward with passing the national security law, the United States will today end exports of U.S.-origin defense equipment and will take steps toward imposing the same restrictions on U.S. defense and dual-use technologies to Hong Kong as it does for China.

The United States is forced to take this action to protect U.S. national security. We can no longer distinguish…

On China’s Threats to Impose Visa Restrictions on U.S. Officials

"The Chinese Communist Party’s crackdown on Hong Kong prompted the United States to retool its relationship with the territory. The Chinese Communist Party’s threats to retaliate by restricting visas for U.S. citizens exposes once again how Beijing refuses to take responsibility for its own choices. If China wants to regain the trust of Hong Kongers and the international community, it should honor the promises it made to the Hong Kong people and to the United Kingdom in the U.N.-registered 1984 Sino-British Joint Declaration."

U.S. Department of State Imposes Visa Restrictions on Chinese Communist Party Officials for Undermining Hong Kong’s High Degree of Autonomy and Restricting Human Rights

"President Trump promised to punish the Chinese Communist Party (CCP) officials who were responsible for eviscerating Hong Kong’s freedoms. Today, we are taking action to do just that.

The CCP has stepped up efforts to undermine Hong Kong’s high degree of autonomy by announcing Beijing’s authority to “supervise” Hong Kong’s governance, accusing at least one member of Hong Kong’s Legislative Council of misconduct, and moving to unilaterally and arbitrarily impose national security legislation on Hong Kong. Beijing’s continued actions undermine its commitments and obligations in…

The 70th Anniversary of the Korean War

"June 25th marks the 70th anniversary of the beginning of the Korean War. The United States will never forget those from the United States, the Republic of Korea (ROK), and other countries under the United Nations Command who laid down their lives in the name of our shared values of freedom and democracy. The U.S. commitment to the defense of the ROK remains ironclad. The alliance continues to work toward our shared goals of securing peace, stability, and prosperity on the Korean Peninsula and the…