Hong Kong is located on the southern coast of China and is a Special Administrative Region of the People's Republic of China. Hong Kong was transferred to the People's Republic of China by the British in 1997, following an agreement reached between the two countries in 1997. The territory has a long and complex legal history dating back to the 1842 Treaty of Nanking, which concluded the First Opium War. The territory is administered as a semi-autonomous region under the principle of "one country, two systems". This system provides for a high degree of autonomy within the PRC, including an independent judiciary and a separate economic development path.