Hong Kong: History

  1. 1842

    China cedes Hong Kong island to the British following the First Opium War.

  2. 1898

    China leases Hong Kong and other territories to Britain for 99 years.

  3. 1937

    Hong Kong becomes a refuge for thousands of mainland Chinese during the outbreak of the Sino-Japanese War.

  4. 1941

    Japan's occupation of Hong Kong and food shortages drive many residents to flee to Mainland China. A population of 1.6 million in 1941 shrinks to 650,000 by the end of World War II.

  5. 1950s

    Hong Kong experiences an economic revival fueled by light industries such as textiles.

  6. 1970s

    Hong Kong's high-technology industries based economy thrives and is considered one of the region's economic standouts.

  7. 1984

    Britain and China sign a joint declaration that states that Hong Kong will be reverted to Chinese rule in 1997, but will retain its capitalist economic system and partially democratic political system for 50 years following the handover.

  8. 1992

    The Hong Kong stock market crashes.

  9. 1997

    Hong Kong is handed back to Chinese authorities after more than 150 years of British control.

  10. 2004

    China rules that its approval must be sought for any proposed changes to Hong Kong's election laws, giving China veto power on any moves towards more democracy.

  11. 2007

    The Chinese Government says it will allow the people of Hong Kong to select their own leader in 2017 and their own legislators by 2020.


BBC News