US VP Mike Pence meets Indonesian president on Asia tour

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KORUS, which was signed five years ago, provides duty-free access for 95 percent of consumer and industrial goods. He said that USA exporters should face a level playing field and the relationship should be "win-win". "Our businesses continue to face too many barriers to entry, which tilts the playing field against American workers and American growth", he told local business leaders.

After meeting President Widodo, Pence said his administration wanted fairer trade with Southeast Asia's biggest economy.

Pence also took a much tougher line on North Korea, saying the days of broken promises were over, while adding that the US would counter any attack with an "overwhelming response".

Members of the administration of U.S. President Donald Trump have criticized Japan over automobiles, and expressed concern over things such as Japan's unique standards for minicars and its vehicle inspection system.

"Unless you were in a crisis situation where we thought the North Koreans were getting ready to attack us, a preemptive strike against the North Korean nuclear and missile program is simply not a practical option."

"I think the path of negotiations with North Korea has been a colossal failure now for more than 25 years", Pence told The Washington Post.

The VP noted the Trump administration will "work diligently" with allies, including Japan and China, in order to apply economic and diplomatic pressure on Pyongyang.

Pence arrived in Japan on Tuesday, the second stop of a ten-day Asia tour, and sat down with Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe to discuss measures to tackle the North Korean nuclear issue.

Last week, amid tensions with North Korea and the possibility that the North might conduct a nuclear or missile test, us officials, including the president, had suggested that the U.S.S. Carl Vinson was headed north, toward the Korean peninsula.

Behind the heated rhetoric, Trump's strategy in the region looks somewhat similar to predecessor Barack Obama's - albeit with the added unpredictability of a new president who has shown he's willing to use force.

During their talks on Tuesday, Pence and Aso launched a new "economic dialogue" that will consider ways the countries can strengthen the economic side of their alliance.

US Vice President Mike Pence has issued a fresh warning to North Korea, saying that Washington will counter any potential attack with an "overwhelming and effective" response.

"America has played a certain role in Asia since 1945. that role has in the end of the day been a stabilizer", Delury said.

However, he also said the USA will "continue to work diligently" with Japan, China and other allies in the region to "bring economic and diplomatic pressure to bear on" North Korea. The country's United Nations envoy, Kim In Ryong, said this week that the US had pushed the Korean Peninsula to the "brink of war". Trump in the past has stated "free and fair" trade is necessary, while criticizing Japan's auto trade as unfair.

He said the North Korean regime had for more than a generation sought to develop nuclear weapons and the missiles with which to fire them, impoverishing its people and embittering the region in the process.

The White House foreign policy advisor said that Pence will also praise Widodo's "leadership on counter-terrorism".

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