The Role of British Traders in Urging Britain to Change Diplomacy Policy Against China in the Early 19th Century
Peranan Pedagang British dalam Mendesak Britain Mengubah Dasar Diplomasi Terhadap China Awal Abad ke-19
Keywords:Trader, opium, diplomacy policies, Britain and China
The decline of the British East India Company (EIC) in the late 18th century provided an opportunity for the emergence of British private traders. The British trader took over the role of EIC in the intercontinental trade between East and West. China was among the main focu of the areas. China not only produced quality silk and pottery but also supplied tea that was demanded by the Europeans. Trade became increasingly profitable when British traders managed to balance the trade by bringing in opium into the China market. However, trading activity conducted by British merchants in China is not that easy. British traders had to accept various problems and pressure from the Chinese. Due to the lucrative trade, British traders tried to urge Britain in changing its diplomatic policy towards China. Therefore, this paper analyses the factors and the role of British merchants in urging Britain to change its policy toward China diplomacy. In addition, this paper also evaluates the success of these British traders in influencing the British government. To substantiate the argument and discussion, this paper uses historical research with reference to primary and secondary sources. The primary source of government records, correspondence and reports were referred to and interpreted. Thus, this paper also referred to both books and journals to support the analysis in this paper.
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