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.; former Secretary of State Rex Tillerson; and former Secretary of Defense James Mattis.

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Secretary of Defense Remarks for the Commemoration of the 75th Anniversary of the End of World War II

"Today, in the face of new challenges to this free and open order, we are working to build an even broader coalition of partners – one that includes both longtime friends and former adversaries – to protect the hard-fought gains of generations past and present…especially in the Pacific. We share an important goal – defending the sacred principles that benefit us all: democracy, liberty, sovereignty, human rights, mutual respect, and the rule of law.

To do so, we continue to forge new partnerships and…

Secretary Esper's Remarks at the Daniel K. Inouye Asia-Pacific Center for Security Studies 25th Anniversary Speaker Event

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…

Secretary Pompeo on State Department Fiscal Year 2021 Budget Request - Indo-Pacific

Joint Statement on Australia-U.S. Ministerial Consultations (AUSMIN) 2020

"Secretary of State Mike Pompeo and Secretary of Defense Mark Esper hosted Minister for Foreign Affairs Marise Payne and Minister for Defence Linda Reynolds on July 28 in Washington for the 30th Australia-United States Ministerial Consultations (AUSMIN 2020).

During their discussions, the Secretaries and Ministers built on Prime Minister Morrison’s historic official visit to Washington in September 2019, which demonstrated what President Trump has called the “long, cherished, and unwavering friendship between the United States and Australia.” More than a century since we first fought…

Secretary Michael R. Pompeo at a Press Availability With Secretary of Defense Mark Esper, Australian Foreign Minister Marise Payne, and Australian Defence Minister Linda Reynolds

"SECRETARY POMPEO: Good afternoon, everyone.

We have had a lively and productive set of conversations this morning and last night as well. I’ll get to that in just a bit.

First, though, I want to personally thank Ministers Payne and Reynolds for traveling all this way, halfway around the world, to be with us today. That is a tough trip in ordinary times.

And your entire delegation will be quarantining when you get back. Not many partners will do that for us, and so thank…

Secretary Pompeo’s Meeting with Australian Foreign Minister Payne

"Secretary of State Michael R. Pompeo met yesterday with Australian Foreign Minister Marise Payne in Washington, D.C. Secretary Pompeo and Foreign Minister Payne discussed the unbreakable U.S.-Australia alliance, emphasizing its importance to security and prosperity in the Indo-Pacific region and the world. The Secretary and the Foreign Minister also discussed the 30th Australia – United States Ministerial Consultations (AUSMIN), which they will participate in today along with their Defense counterparts."

IISS Special Presentation with Secretary Esper - US Indo-Pacific Policy

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…

Joint Statement: Five Eyes Defense Ministers’ Meeting

"The defense ministers/secretaries from the Five Eyes nations (Australia, Canada, New Zealand, the United Kingdom and the United States) met via videoconference on 22 / 23 June.

Ministers reaffirmed their commitment to advance defense and security cooperation on matters of common interest to support and defend a stable, rules-based, global order that is increasingly being challenged.

Ministers recognized the role of regional partners and institutions in shaping globally and across the Indo-Pacific a stable and secure, economically resilient community, where the sovereign rights of all…

U.S. Trade Representative on 2020 Trade Policy Agenda - Senate Hearing

Secretary Esper's Op-Ed in "The Straits Times" on US Indo-Pacific Policy

"As an Indo-Pacific nation, the United States is committed to ensuring the region remains free and open for all, and upholding the rules and norms that have secured prosperity for nations of all sizes.

In the year since the Department of Defence released the Indo-Pacific Strategy Report, we have made great strides across the three pillars of our strategy: preparedness, strengthening partnerships, and promoting a more networked region - but there is still much more work to be done.

First, under preparedness, we are prioritising…