Papers Relating to the Foreign Relations of the United States, With the Annual Message of the President Transmitted to Congress December 5, 1905
Minister Rockhill to the Secretary of State.
Peking, October 12, 1905.
Sir: I have the honor to transmit herewith an English translation of the new agreement entered into by the powers signatories of the final protocol of September 7, 1901, with the Chinese Government for the conservancy of the Whangpu River.
I have, etc.,
New agreement for the Whangpu conservancy, signed at Peking September 27, 1905.
With reference to the provisions of the final protocol of 1901 relating to the establishment of a Whangpu conservancy board, its functions and revenues, China being now desirous of substituting a different arrangement, assuming charge herself of the work and making herself responsible for the whole cost, and the powers who were parties to the protocol having given their consent thereto, the following arrangement has been agreed to:
The works in connection with the straightening of the channel of the Whangpu River and of the improvement of the bars above and below Wusung, together with the maintenance of such improvements, shall all be placed under the management of the Shanghai customs taot’ai and the commissioner of customs. The control of the Whangpu River police, lights, beacons, sanitary matters, pilot service, etc., shall be under the same control as formerly.
Within three months from the date of signing this agreement China will herself select an engineer well versed in river conservancy work, and if a majority of the representatives of the powers parties to the final protocol consider him well qualified China will at once appoint him to undertake the work. If after the commencement of the work a new appointment for reasons deemed valid by a majority of said representatives becomes necessary, the selection and appointment shall be made in the manner above mentioned.
For all contracts for undertaking the river works in whole or in part and for purchasing materials and machinery and the like, public tenders shall be invited and the most advantageous shall be accepted.
Every quarter a detailed report of the work done and an account of moneys expended on the river works shall be made and forwarded for the inspection of the consular body at Shanghai.
The authorization of the Shanghai customs taot’ai and of the commissioner of customs shall be necessary before new bunds or jetties can be constructed, pontoons placed in position, or hulks stationed in the river.[Page 123]
The Shanghai customs taot’ai and the commissioner of customs shall have authority to expropriate existing moorings and to establish a system of public moorings in the river.
No dredging or other operations shall be carried out without the authorization of the Shanghai customs taot’ai and the commissioner of customs.
The Shanghai customs toat’ai and the commissioner of customs shall have power to acquire any land outside the foreign settlements necessary for the work of improvement and maintenance of the Whangpu River and to dispose of such land. If for this purpose it is considered necessary to proceed by way of expropriation, the price in the case of a foreigner’s property shall be fixed by a commission composed of (1) a person selected by the consular authority of the owner, (2) another chosen by the Shanghai customs taot’ai and the commissioner of customs, and (3) of another chosen by the senior consul. In case the senior consul is also the consular authority of the owner, the consul next in seniority shall choose the third member of the commission. The consular authority of the owner shall provide for the execution of the arbitrator’s decision. When the land is the property of a Chinese the customs shall fix the price and enforce the decision in an analogous manner.
Foreign and Chinese riparian owners shall have the right of preemption over all land formed in front of their property by reclamation from the river in the course of the execution of the works of the improvement of the channel at a price to be fixed by a commission formed in the same manner as prescribed in the preceding paragraph, or, as the case may be, by the customs authorities.
The Chinese Government bears the whole cost of the river works and without levying for this purpose dues on riparian property, shipping, or goods.
China now sets aside and assigns the entire opium duty of Szechuen and of Hsü-chou Fu in Kiang-su as security for the whole cost of the river works; and in accordance with the estimated cost, as stated in the protocol of 1901, will annually supply 460,000 haikwan taels for this purpose for a term of twenty years. If during any given year after the commencement of the work it is necessary to incur an extraordinary expenditure for the purchase of materials, machinery, etc., China may raise, to meet it, a loan for the required amount and issue bonds on the security of the above-mentioned opium revenues. The total sum annually provided for sinking fund and for interest on such loan, as well as for expenses of all kinds on account of works and maintaining works already completed, shall not be less than 460,000 haikwan taels, to be paid in equal monthly installments by the provincial authorities concerned to the Shanghai customs taot’ai and the commissioner of customs. Should the revenues assigned fall short, the Chinese Government will provide the amount specified from other sources.
If the works are not carried out with diligency, care, and economy by a majority vote the consular body may unite to point out the fact to the Shanghai customs taot’ai and the commissioner of customs, and call upon them to direct the engineer to take steps to remedy the matters complained of, and if the work is still not properly done they may recommend the engineer’s dismissal and the selection and appointment of another engineer, in the manner described in Article II. In case no notice is taken by the Shanghai customs taot’ai and commissioner of customs of their representatives, the consular body may report to the representatives of the powers interested.
After the present stipulations have been discussed, agreed upon, and signed, section (b) of Article XI and annex 17 of the protocol of 1901 will be suspended. But if China does not, in accordance with this new agreement, annually furnish the necessary funds, so that the requirements of the works are impeded, or if she omits to fulfill any other of the essential [Page 124] stipulations of this agreement, the original stipulations of the protocol of 1901 and of annex 17 thereto shall immediately come into force.
[Seal of Waiwu-Pu.] (Prince of Ch’ing’s signature.)