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Hong Kong History Timeline

Hong Kong's Information

Flag of Hong Kong
Land Area 1,073 km2
Water Area 35 km2
Total Area 1,108km2
Population 7,167,403 (#100)
Population Density 6,679.78/km2
Government Type Presidential Limited Democracy; A Special Administrative Region Of The PRC
GDP (PPP) $427.00 Billion
GDP Per Capita $58,100
Currency Dollar (HKD)
Largest Cities
200BC - 1800AD
  • (206BC - 220AD) Han Dynasty governed all of China
  • (1163) Salt fields in Hong Kong were officially managed
  • (1661) During Qing Dynasty, Kangxi Emperor ordered Great Clearance, required evacuation of the coastal areas of Guangdon; Hong Kong territory became mostly wasteland
  • (1669) Great Clearance ban was lifted
  • (1757) British East India company pursued monopoly on opium production
1800 - 1900
  • (1839 - 1842) First Opium War fought between United Kingdom and Qing Dynasty over diplomatic relations, trade, administration of justice
  • (1842) Treaty of Nanking ended First Opium War; China ceded Hong Kong to Britain
  • (1847) Kowloon Walled City became an enclave
  • (1860) In Peking Convention, Kowloon area was ceded to Britain by China in perpetuity
  • (1898) Britain leased New Territories and 225 other islands for 99 years
  • (1898) First wave of immigrants came to Hong Kong
  • (1925) Sikh police, under British command, opened fire on Chinese demonstrators at Shanghai International Settlement
  • (1925) Canton-Hong Kong strike took place between Hong Kong and Guangdong, China in response to shooting incidents
  • (1937) Great Hong Kong Typhoon of 1937 killed 11,000 people
  • (1937) Hong Kong became refuge for thousands of mainland Chinese with outbreak of Sino-Japanese War
  • (1941) Japan occupied Hong Kong following Battle of Hong Kong
  • (1941) Food shortages caused many residents to flee to mainland China
  • (1945) World War II ended, Japan lost, left Hong Kong
  • (1946) Britain reestablished government, hundreds of thousands of former residents returned
  • (1950s) Light industries helped revive economy, provided work for many refugees
  • (1953) Major fire destroyed Shek Kip Mei shantytown of immigrants, left 53,000 homeless
  • (1956) Hong Kong riots began with looting and attacks by pro-Nationalists on pro-Communist citizens and property
  • (1960s) Much social discontent and labor disputes took place by poorly-paid workforce
  • (1966) Riots occurred against British government's decision to increase the fare of Star Ferry
  • (1967) Hong Kong hit with major riots, mostly caused by followers of China's Cultural Revolution
  • (1968) Hong Kong influenza pandemic spread worldwide
  • (1970s) Hong Kong was established as an "Asian Tiger", one of the region's economic powerhouses
  • (1976) British asked to renew their 99-year lease on the New Territories, China's chairman, Den Ziaoping, refused and demanded all of Hong Kong be returned to China
  • (1982) Britain and China began talks on Hong Kong's future
  • (1984) Joint Declaration signed by Britain and China would revert Hong Kong to Chinese rule in 1997. It would be part of China, but retain its capitalist economic and democratic political system for 50 years after the China take-over
  • (1989) Tiananmen Square massacre in Beijing resulted in more than one million people in Hong Kong demonstrating in streets, stock market plunged 22% in one day
  • (1992) Chris Patten, last British governor of Hong Kong arrived to oversee handover to China
  • (1992) Patten announced democtratic reforms for 1994 and 1995 elections, China denounced move as subversive to smooth transition. Relations between China and Britian deteriorated. Many Hong Kong residents applied for Canadian and British citizenship
  • (1992) Hong Kong stock market crashed
  • (1995) Elections held for a new Legislative Council
  • (1996) Tlung Chee Hwa elected Chief Executive of Hong Kong in election arranged by Beijing
  • (1997) Official Hong Kong Handover took place after 150 years of control by British
  • (1998) First post-handover Hong Kong elections were held
This page was last updated on July 10, 2020.

Hong Kong Trivia

Is Hong Kong Owned by China?

Hong Kong is actually what is called a Special Administrative Region (SAR) of China. By all official accounts, Hong Kong is a part of China.

Is Hong Kong a Country?

About the Author

John Moen is a cartographer who along with his wife are the orignal founders of worldatlas.com. He and his wife, Chris Woolwine-Moen, produced thousands of award-winning maps that are used all over the world and content that aids students, teachers, travelers and parents with their geography and map questions. Today, it's one of the most popular educational sites on the web.

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