Foreign Concessions in Chinese Hands

Courtesy Reuters

FOREIGN residential areas in China are classed as "settlements" and "concessions," but the two types are similar, both being regions set apart by the Chinese Government within which foreigners may reside and lease land. In some eleven instances, local administrative agencies have been set up by foreigners and these agencies have been recognized either formally or tacitly by the Chinese Government. The theoretical distinction between a settlement and a concession lies in the methods by which the land in it is leased from the Chinese Government. In the concession, as a rule, the entire area is leased by a single foreign state which pays a rental for it; parcels of land are then subleased by the foreign state to private lessees. In the settlement there is no general lease undertaken by a foreign government, but private lessees obtain their properties directly from the local Chinese authorities. This distinction in landholding

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