Asia Pacific 1907: Anglo-French Agreement on Siam

The Russo-Japanese War had threatened to embroil France and Britain, the allies of the two combatants. To preserve the peace between them, they signed the Entente Cordiale. In Asia, this led to the division of Siam into spheres of influence in 1907 and the subsequent expansion of French Indochina and British Malaya at Siam's expense.


Treaty Ports

Treaty ports - the small unlabelled circles on the map - were towns opened to foreign trade by unequal treaties in China, Japan, and Korea. Foreigners operating within treaty ports enjoyed extraterritoriality, being subject to their home country’s laws. Unlike concessions such as Hong Kong, these territories were not directly leased by the foreign powers and did not have sizable foreign garrisons.

Only treaty ports that were opened by treaty and used are shown on the maps. Treaty ports are also not generally shown in places which are already covered by concessions or under occupation. Treaty ports are not shown after the 1911 Chinese Revolution, although they continued on into the 1940s.

Yangtze River

By the terms of the Treaty of Tientsin (1858), foreign vessels including warships had the right to free navigation on the Yangtze River. In practical terms, this right extended only as far as Yichang until 1900, when advances in steam navigation allowed access as far inland as Chongqing.

Main Events

5 Sep 1905 Treaty of Portsmouth

The Japanese and Russian Empires signed the Treaty of Portsmouth at Portsmouth Naval Shipyard in the US state of Maine, bringing an end to the Russo-Japanese War. As a result of the treaty, Russia ceded southern Sakhalin, its leases on Port Arthur, and the southern part of the Chinese Eastern Railway—the South Manchurian Railway—to Japan. US President Theodore Roosevelt was instrumental in the negotiations, winning the Nobel Peace Prize for his wikipedia

17 Nov 1905 Eulsa Protection Treaty

With Japanese troops encircling the Korean imperial palace in Hanseong (Seoul), representatives of the Empire of Japan presented the Empire of Korea with a treaty formalizing Japanese control over Korea’s foreign policy and its influence over Korea’s international trade. Although neither the Korean Emperor Gojong nor his Prime Minister accepted the treaty, five Korean ministers agreed to sign, which was sufficient for the Japanese to deem it wikipedia

24 Apr 1906 Anglo-Chinese Convention

The Qing dynasty and the British Empire signed the Convention Between Great Britain and China Respecting Tibet, reaffirming the Chinese possession of Tibet. The British agreed not to interfere in Tibet, while China confirmed that it would not permit any other foreign state to do so. This Convention succeeded the 1904 Treaty of Lhasa between Tibet and wikipedia

8 Apr 1907 Anglo-French Agreement on Siam

Following the terms of the Entente Cordiale, the French Republic and the United Kingdom established spheres of influence in the Kingdom of Siam. The British recognized French influence to the east of the River Menam basin; in turn, the French recognized British influence to the west of the Menam basin. Both parties disclaimed any idea of annexing Siamese wikipedia