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Opium War - Essay Example

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For instance, there existed a high demand for Chinese tea, porcelain and silk in the British market. However, Britain did not have sufficient silver to trade with then Qing Empire. Hence, a system…
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Opium War
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Opium War

Download file to see previous pages... The First Opium War was majorly caused by Chinas isolationist trade relations with the West particularly the British. Tension further arose between China and British because China would accept only silver from the British. Opium addiction was also the main and direct cause of the wars. During this time, opium addiction was an epidemic for the people of China. The British took this advantage of the high demand and began illegal exportation of opium which angered the Chinese. Furthermore, the trade was considered as disrespectful to the emperor and was in a violation of Chinese law. The tension then built more, and none of the countries were willing to compromise. All was as a result of China to spoil trade for British, and they engaged in the war to show their frustration.
The consequences of the Treaty of Nanjing were more like the impact of the Opium War itself since the Treaty was as a result of the Opium War. In the treaty, the British as a country were given Hong Kong and free access to five ports. The ratification humiliated China, and their demand were never considered. According to the ratification “…. The Emperor of China agrees to abolish that practice in future at all Ports where British Merchants’’ (Article V). This was more like a humiliation as apart from the port accusation China was compelled to pay a huge sum of fine. In these five ports, the British Nationals had the right of extraterritoriality. This is to say, they were not subject to laws of China. In immediate resolution, these were not all that significant. Moreover, they represented the start of a series of humiliating episodes in where the Chinese were forced to open up more to the West. The treaty, for instance, has been considered significant in modern day Sino-foreign relations (Wang, 2005).
There are various historical lessons that one can learn from opium war. The war is important as it humiliated the Chinese. Chinese ...Download file to see next pagesRead More
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