Truly free Indo-Pa­cific vowed

Tempo - - News - (Ge­na­lyn D. Ka­bil­ing)

United States Pres­i­dent Don­ald Trump yes­ter­day pledged to pro­mote a strong, free, and pros­per­ous Indo-Pa­cific re­gion where coun­tries are “in con­trol of their own des­tinies” dur­ing the USAs­so­ci­a­tion of South­east Asian Na­tions Sum­mit in Pasay City yes­ter­day.

Trump ex­tended his mes­sage of friendship and co­op­er­a­tion with the re­gional part­ners. "I’m here to ad­vance peace, to pro­mote se­cu­rity, and to work with you to achieve a truly free and open Indo-Pa­cific where we are proud and we have sov­er­eign na­tions, and we thrive, and ev­ery­one wants to pros­per,” Trump said in his re­marks.

“We want our part­ners in the re­gion to be strong, in­de­pen­dent, and pros­per­ous in con­trol of their own des­tinies and satel­lites to no one. These are the prin­ci­ples be­hind our vi­sion for a free and open Indo-Pa­cific,” said Trump who has es­poused his Indo-Pa­cific pol­icy ap­par­ently to counter the grow­ing clout of China in the re­gion.

Trump also pushed for closer eco­nomic co­op­er­a­tion be­tween the United States and the re­gional bloc, cit­ing their ro­bust economies and vi­brant com­mu­ni­ties. “To­day, we cel­e­brate your in­cred­i­ble suc­cess and we also seek eco­nomic part­ner­ship on the ba­sis of fair­ness and rec­i­proc­ity,” he said.

Trump said since his Novem­ber elec­tions, Amer­i­can eco­nomic has been “mov­ing ahead re­ally bril­liantly.” He high­lighted the US record-high stock market performance and “low­est un­em­ploy­ment in 17 years.” He said the value of stocks has risen to $5.5 tril­lion.

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