Madrid Protocol of 1885

The Madrid Protocol in 1885 making North Borneo under the control of British North Borneo Company while the Sulu Archipelago and the rest of the Philippines islands was under the control of Spanish East Indies.

The Madrid Protocol of 1885 is an agreement between Great Britain, Germany and Spain to recognise the sovereignty of Spain over the Sulu Archipelago as well as the limit of Spanish influence in the region.[1] Under the agreement, Spain relinquishes all claim to Borneo.

The Spanish Government renounces, as far as regards the British Government, all claims of sovereignty over the

territories of the continent of Borneo, which belong, or which have belonged in the past to the Sultan of Sulu (Jolo), and which comprise the neighbouring islands of Balambangan, Banguey, and Malawali, as well as all those comprised within

a zone of three maritime leagues from the coast, and which form part of the territories administered by the Company styled the “British North Borneo Company”.

— Article III, Madrid Protocol of 1885

Another important point regarding the agreement relates to Article IV which guarantees of no restriction on trade to the parties of the protocol within the Archipelago and North Borneo.

See also[edit]


  1. ^ Tregonning, H.G. (1970). The Philippine Claim to Sabah (PDF). The Malayan Branch of the Royal Asiatic Society.

Further reading[edit]

  • Leigh R. Wright. Historical Notes on the North Borneo Dispute. The Journal of Asian Studies, Vol. 25, No. 3 (May 1966), pp. 471–484.
  • Leigh R. Wright. The Origins of British Borneo. Modern Asian Studies, Vol. 10, No. 1 (1976), pp. 149–154
  • Leigh R. Wright. The Anglo-Spanish-German Treaty of 1885: A Step in the Development of British Hegemony in North Borneo. Australian Journal of Politics & History 18 (1), 62–75

External links[edit]