Algeciras Conference

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Algeciras Conference
To ratify European intervention in Morocco following the First Moroccan Crisis
Signed 7 April 1906
Location Algeciras, Spain
Sealed 18 June 1906

 British Empire
France France
 United States

Languages French, English and Spanish

The Algeciras Conference of 1906 took place in Algeciras, Spain, and lasted from 16 January to 7 April. The purpose of the conference was to find a solution to the First Moroccan Crisis of 1905 between France and the German Empire, which arose as Germany attempted to prevent France from establishing a protectorate over Morocco in what was known as the Tangier Crisis.[1]


Germany had originally hoped that the Conference would isolate Great Britain. Wilhelm II had thought that he could form an alliance with France if most of their demands were met. He also thought that better relations with Russia were possible due to the Revolution of 1905 and Russo-Japanese War putting them in a weak, ally-hungry position. However, due to Germany being somewhat excluded in the initial decisions and Britain's Foreign Secretary Sir Edward Grey showing Britain's support of France in the Conference via meetings with French ambassador Jules Cambon, the Entente Cordiale, despite Wilhelm's efforts, grew stronger.

Following their failed attempt to isolate Britain, Germany furthered the growing Anglo-German Naval Race through passing the Third Naval Law in 1906. The overall contribution towards the outbreak of the First World War can then seen to be the separation of Germany and her allies (Triple Alliance) and Britain, France and Russia, who in the following year would become the Triple Entente. The next major event to thicken the tension between these two would be the Bosnian Crisis.


The final Act of the conference of Algeciras, signed on 7 April 1906, covered the organisation of Morocco's police and customs, regulations concerning the repression of the smuggling of armaments, and concessions to the European bankers from a newly formed State Bank of Morocco, issuing banknotes backed by gold, with a 40-year term. The new state bank was to act as Morocco's Central Bank, but with a strict cap on the spending of the Sherifian Empire, with administrators appointed by the national banks that guaranteed the loans; the German Empire, United Kingdom, France and Spain. Spanish coinage continued to circulate and the right for Europeans to own land was established whilst taxes were to be levied towards public works.[2]

The Sultan of Morocco retained control of a police force in the six port cities, which was to be composed entirely of Moroccan Muslims (budgeted at an average salary of a mere 1000 pesetas a year) but now to be instructed by French and Spanish officers, who would oversee the paymaster (the Amin) and regulate discipline and could be recalled and replaced by their governments. The Inspector-General in charge would be Swiss and reside in Tangiers.

At the last moment, the Moroccan delegates found that they were unable to sign the final Act, but a decree of Sultan Abdelaziz of Morocco on June 18 finally ratified it.

See also[edit]


  1. ^ "The Algeciras Conference of 1906". History Learning Site. May 2012. Retrieved 7 March 2014. 
  2. ^ "Algeciras Conference". Encyclopædia Britannica. Retrieved 7 March 2014. 
  • Esthus, Raymond A, Theodore Roosevelt and the International Rivalries (1970) pp 88–111

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