Historic trip to Asia
President Donald J. Trump travels to East Asia November 5–14 to strengthen economic and security ties. His trip begins in Japan on November 5 and ends nine days later in the Philippines. Along the way he will stop in South Korea, China and Vietnam. Check here often as we update information on the President’s trip, which is the longest to Asia by any U.S. president in the last 25 years.
Highlights from President Trump’s Asia trip
President Donald J. Trump just wrapped up a historic five-country trip to Asia. Here are some memorable moments that you might have missed:
President Trump and China’s President Xi Jinping attended an opera performance in Beijing’s Forbidden City on November 8.
With Japanese Prime Minister Shinzō Abe, President Trump fed koi fish in a pond at the Akasaka Palace in Tokyo.
Hats for the occasion
Before burgers and a round of golf, Japanese Prime Minister Shinzō Abe presented President Trump with a special hat: “Donald & Shinzō Make Alliance Even Greater.” The “Trump burger” became a hit in Japan.
Friends from the White House to the Blue House
President Trump joins Korean President Moon Jae-in at the Blue House, the executive mansion of South Korea. There, President Trump reaffirmed the ironclad U.S. commitment to defend South Korea from its neighbor to the north. On the trade front, South Korea announced plans to purchase $58 billion in U.S. goods and services, including $23 billion in energy purchases.
U.S. First Lady Melania Trump meets with schoolchildren outside of the Blue House in Seoul, South Korea.
Hello, Grandpa Xi!
President Trump’s 6-year-old granddaughter, Arabella Kushner, wowed Chinese President Xi Jinping with a song and proverbs in Mandarin. President Trump shared this video with Xi and his wife, Peng Liyuan, while the two first families had tea in Beijing’s Forbidden City.
Panda power in Beijing
First Lady Melania Trump met a star when she visited the Beijing Zoo — the panda Gu Gu.
Deals in China
During President Trump’s visit with President Xi in Beijing, U.S. and Chinese businesses signed deals totaling more than $250 billion.
At the Great Wall
U.S. First Lady Melania Trump spent time exploring the Mutianyu section of the Great Wall of China north of Beijing.
“Unforgettable memories!” she tweeted about the experience.
Red carpet welcome
In between the pomp and ceremony, President Trump and Vietnamese President Tran Dai Quang concluded $12 billion in commercial deals.
All together now
President Trump and world leaders came together to confront the biggest challenges to Indo-Pacific security at the Association of Southeast Asian Nations summit in Manila, Philippines. This year, ASEAN celebrated its 50-year anniversary.
“It’s been an incredible 12 days,” President Trump said as he was about to return to the U.S.
A fond farewell
President Donald J. Trump concluded his historic trip to Asia on November 14. “We’ve had a tremendously successful trip,” he said before departing Manila on presidential plane Air Force One. President Trump thanked his hosts in Japan, South Korea, China, Vietnam, and the Philippines. “I think the fruits of our labor are going to be incredible, whether it’s security of our nations, whether it’s security of the world, or whether it’s trade,” he said.
Security at the top
With 17 other world leaders at the East Asia Summit in Manila, Secretary of State Rex Tillerson represented the United States to support a free and open Indo-Pacific.
Good deals for the world
President Trump, standing with Secretary of State Rex Tillerson, right, and National Security Advisor H.R. McMaster, left, highlighted the success of his historic five-country trip to Asia. President Trump said that U.S. and international companies signed more than $300 billion in business deals. “The United States is open for trade, but we want reciprocal trade,” he said. “We have to be treated fairly. We have to be treated in a reciprocal fashion.”
Promoting security with India’s Modi
President Trump and Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi praised their growing relationship — between the world’s biggest democracy and the world’s oldest democracy. The two vowed to work together to promote security in the region and around the world.
U.S.-Philippine alliance, 70 years strong
President Trump and Philippine President Rodrigo Duterte met in Manila to celebrate 70 years of alliance and partnership. Both leaders agreed to deepen extensive economic ties between the two nations.
Allies stand together
President Trump and U.S. allies Australian Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull, right, and Japanese Prime Minister Shinzō Abe, left, vowed to maintain maximum pressure on North Korea in the effort to denuclearize the Korean Peninsula.
Happy birthday, ASEAN!
With world leaders in Manila, Philippines, President Trump celebrated the 50th anniversary of the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN). A tradition of the meeting is a group photo and the “ASEAN handshake,” above.
“The United States remains committed to ASEAN’s central role as a regional forum for total cooperation,” the President said. “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,” President Trump said.
Peace flourishes in Vietnam
President Trump met with Vietnamese President Tran Dai Quang (pictured) at the Presidential Palace. President Trump formally transferred the first U.S. Coast Guard cutter to the Vietnamese Navy. A ship that once patrolled the Vietnamese coast during the Vietnam War now promotes Vietnam’s maritime security.
“Out of war and conflict, we have achieved a deep friendship, partnership, and we have achieved peace,” President Trump said. During his visit, President Trump also met Vietnam’s Prime Minister Nguyen Xuan Phuc.
Partners in growth
Child dancers were part of the welcoming ceremony to greet President Trump and President Tran Dai Quang in Hanoi. President Trump congratulated Vietnam on its economy, “one of the fastest-growing on earth,” he said.
“We know it is in America’s interests to have partners throughout this region that are thriving, prosperous, and dependent on no one.”
President Trump renews America’s partnership with Asian economies
President Donald J. Trump outlined his vision for a “free and open Indo-Pacific region” to business leaders from Asia-Pacific economies meeting in Danang, Vietnam.
In his address on November 10, the President called for “a place where sovereign and independent nations, with diverse cultures and many different dreams, can all prosper side-by-side and thrive in freedom and in peace.”
In his remarks to the Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation CEO Summit, President Trump hailed the economic transformation that has occurred across the Indo-Pacific region, which stretches from the Indian subcontinent to the West Coast of North America. This region, the world’s most economically vibrant, promotes private property and the rule of law, he said, and embraces systems that value hard work and individual enterprise.
The President said he is willing to work with all the APEC member economies to achieve “mutually beneficial commerce.”
“I will make bilateral trade agreements with any Indo-Pacific nation that wants to be our partner and that will abide by the principles of fair and reciprocal trade,” he said.
On the security front, the President called on allies to work together to defeat terrorism and stop North Korea’s illegal nuclear weapons program. “Every single step the North Korean regime takes toward more weapons is a step it takes into greater and greater danger,” the President said. “The future of this region and its beautiful people must not be held hostage to a dictator’s twisted fantasies of violent conquest and nuclear blackmail.”
The President emphasized America’s pride in belonging to the gathered community of economic leaders. “We have been friends, partners, and allies in the Indo-Pacific for a long, long time, and we will be friends, partners, and allies for a long time to come,” the President said.
U.S. President Donald J. Trump and First Lady Melania Trump arrive for a state dinner with China’s President Xi Jinping and First Lady Peng Liyuan. President Trump addressed his counterpart in a toast, “To the people of your country, and to a friendship that will only grow stronger and stronger in the many years to come.”
President Trump departs for Vietnam on November 10.
New business deals total billions
“My administration is committed to improving our trade and business relationships with China,” President Trump said. U.S. and Chinese companies signed business and investment deals valued in the billions.
“We’re committed to a free and open Indo-Pacific based [on] respect for the rule of law, private enterprise, and trade reciprocity,” the President said.
On the red carpet
Chinese President Xi Jinping welcomes President Trump in a ceremony in front of the Great Hall of the People in Beijing before of a day of meetings, business events, and a state dinner. “The United States, working with China and other regional partners, has an incredible opportunity to advance the cause of peace, security, and prosperity all across the world,” President Trump said.
Drama in the Forbidden City
President Donald J. Trump greeted opera performers after a show in Beijing’s Forbidden City. The American and Chinese first families took in the performance with U.S. Secretary of State Rex Tillerson and Terry Branstad, U.S. ambassador to China.
President Trump also shared a video of his 6-year-old granddaughter, Arabella, reciting poetry and verses in Mandarin. President Xi remarked that her Chinese skills were worthy of an “A-plus” — highest marks.
Standing together in Beijing
President Trump and his wife, Melania, stand with China’s President Xi Jinping and his wife, Peng Liyuan, in the Forbidden City. Touring the 15th-century complex, home to multiple imperial dynasties of China, was “unforgettable,” President Trump said.
Crowds cheer Trump in China
President Trump arrived in Beijing to crowds of children waving U.S. and Chinese flags.
President Trump: ‘Now is the time for strength’
President Donald J. Trump had sharp words for North Korea during a speech in South Korea on November 7: “Do not underestimate us. And do not try us.”
The President called on every nation to fully implement U.N. Security Council resolutions and exert maximum pressure to isolate North Korea, downgrade diplomatic relations with the regime, and sever all ties of trade and technology.
“All responsible nations must join forces to isolate the brutal regime of North Korea,” President Trump said. He noted that the North Korean regime has pursued its nuclear and ballistic missile programs in defiance of every assurance, agreement, and commitment it has made to the United States and its allies.
“It is our responsibility and our duty to confront this danger together — because the longer we wait, the greater the danger grows, and the fewer the options become,” he said. “And to those nations that choose to ignore this threat, or, worse still, to enable it, the weight of this crisis is on your conscience.”
President Trump’s speech to Korea’s National Assembly came as he spent four days in Japan and South Korea, crucial U.S. allies, to promote security in the Indo-Pacific region as part of his historic trip to Asia.
‘One people, two Koreas’
The President said that the more successful South Korea becomes, “the more decisively you discredit the dark fantasy at the heart of the Kim regime. … It is a tale of one people, but two Koreas,” President Trump said. “One Korea in which the people took control of their lives and their country and chose a future of freedom and justice, of civilization and incredible achievement. And another Korea in which leaders imprison their people under the banner of tyranny, fascism, and oppression.”
President Trump closed his speech with a positive vision for the Korean peninsula, a realization of the Korean dream. “Together, we dream of a Korea that is free, a peninsula that is safe, and families that are reunited once again. We dream of highways connecting North and South, of cousins embracing cousins, and this nuclear nightmare replaced with the beautiful promise of peace.”
After his speech at Korea’s National Assembly, President Trump departed for China. His trip to Asia is the longest by any U.S. president in the last 25 years.
U.S. and South Korean presidents meet the press
“North Korea is a worldwide threat that requires worldwide action,” President Donald J. Trump said during a joint press conference.
More than 20 countries have acted to restrict North Korean diplomatic activities to denounce Kim Jong Un’s regime for unlawful testing of missiles and nuclear devices.
South Korean President Moon Jae-in said: “We must maintain a strong stance toward North Korean threats based on overwhelming superiority of power. President Trump has reaffirmed his ironclad commitment to defend Korea.”
President Trump spoke of the vital U.S.-South Korea relationship: “Our alliance is more important than ever to peace and security on the Korean Peninsula and across the Indo-Pacific region.”
Trade on the agenda
On their way to discuss trade and security issues, President Trump, left, and South Korean President Moon walked past an honor guard at the presidential Blue House in Seoul, South Korea.
“I feel confident that we’ll be able to reach a free, fair, and reciprocal trade deal,” President Trump said November 7. The two countries have agreed to renegotiate an existing trade pact.
Dining at Camp Humphreys, South Korea
“We are partners and friends who have fought side by side in a war and, really, worked very hard and prospered toward a great and lasting peace,” President Trump said while he and South Korean President Moon visited U.S. and South Korean service members at Camp Humphreys.
President Trump, Prime Minister Abe share opportunities, challenges
President Donald J. Trump and Japan’s Prime Minister Shinzō Abe strengthened their countries’ economic and security bonds during meetings in Tokyo on November 6.
Regarding North Korea, “The era of ‘strategic patience’ is over,” President Trump said.
“Through the talks over two days, I once again strongly reaffirmed that Japan and the U.S. are 100 percent together,” Prime Minister Abe said at a press conference in Akasaka Palace. “Now is the time not for dialogue but for applying maximum level of pressure on North Korea,” he said.
The same day, President Trump and Prime Minister Abe met with the families of young Japanese people abducted by the North Korean regime. “We can’t let that happen,” President Trump said. “The United States of America stands in solidarity with the people of Japan against the North Korean menace.”
The president expressed optimism about the future of the two countries’ economic partnership. “I know that we will be able to come up with trade deals and trade concepts that are going to be fair to both countries,” he said.
The bold brush of friendship
The First Ladies of the United States and Japan, Melania Trump (left) and Akie Abe (right), joined fourth-grade students at Kyobashi Tsukiji Elementary School in Tokyo for a calligraphy class on November 6. Invited to try her hand at Japanese calligraphy, Trump drew out the character “hei,” which means “calm,” and Abe drew the character for “harmony.” Together, the two letters mean “peace.”
President Trump rallies troops in Japan
A cheering crowd of U.S. military and Japanese Self-Defense Force members greeted President Trump at Yokota Air Base in Japan on November 5. During his first stop in Japan, the President reaffirmed the enduring bond between the two countries.
“Our alliance is a testament to the transformative power of freedom,” he said. “Today, nations that once waged war now stand together as friends and partners in pursuit of a much better world.”
Tokyo welcomes Ivanka Trump
In advance of the President’s historic trip, Ivanka Trump arrived in Japan to speak November 3 about the role women play in the global economy.
“If women close the gap with men in all aspects of work and society, it could add trillions to our annual global [gross domestic product] over the next decade,” Trump said in a speech to the World Assembly for Women in downtown Tokyo. Japanese Prime Minister Shinzō Abe, who had invited the President’s adviser and daughter to speak at the event, introduced her.
Trump urged businesses and governments to do more to promote women in the fields of science, technology, engineering and math (STEM). “Over the coming decades, technologies such as automation and robotics will transform the way we work, and we want to make sure that women can lead in the economy of the future,” she said.
In the summer of 2017, Japan and the United States helped launch the Women Entrepreneurs Finance Initiative. The program provides access to capital, networks and mentorship for women entrepreneurs in developing countries.
In her White House role, Trump has focused on work-life issues, workforce development and on-the-job training programs. “I saw a chance to work on behalf of girls in rural communities and inner cities who, by learning to code or studying robotics, could secure good-paying jobs in our modern economy,” she said.
“She is a role model for women,” Rena Hayakawa, a political science major at Meiji University in Tokyo, told the New York Times as she waited to hear Trump speak.
First stop: Japan
The first leg of the President’s trip to Asia is Japan, where he will meet with U.S. and Japanese service members and hold bilateral talks with Prime Minister Shinzō Abe. “We are committed to the security of Japan … and to further strengthening our very crucial alliance,” President Trump said earlier this year.
Prime Minister Abe also will convene a meeting with the families of Japanese citizens abducted by the North Korean regime. Japan is among several countries that have restricted diplomatic relations or adopted measures beyond U.N. sanctions in response to North Korea’s reckless pursuit of nuclear weapons.
U.S.-Japan cultural ties run deep, from gifts of cherry blossoms and bonsai trees to Japan’s influence on American films, dance club music, and the Kennedy Center in Washington.
U.S. Secretary of State Rex Tillerson accompanies the President on the trip. Earlier this year, Tillerson’s first official visit to Asia began with a stop in Japan.
November 5–6 in Japan
Highlights include meeting with Prime Minister Shinzō Abe.
November 7 in South Korea
Highlights include speaking at the National Assembly and meeting with President Moon Jae-in.
November 8–9 in China
Highlights include meeting President Xi Jinping.
November 10–11 in Vietnam
Highlights include speaking at the Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC) CEO Summit and meeting with President Tran Dai Quang.
November 12–14 in the Philippines
Highlights include dinner for the 50th anniversary of the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) and meeting President Rodrigo Duterte.