(Printable version of this text)
GENERAL ACT OF THE CONFERENCE AT BERLIN OF THE PLENIPOTENTIARIES OF GREAT BRITAIN, AUSTRIA-HUNGARY, BELGIUM, DENMARK, FRANCE, GERMANY, ITALY, THE NETHERLANDS, PORTUGAL, RUSSIA, SPAIN, SWEDEN AND NORWAY, TURKEY AND THE UNITED STATES RESPECTING: (1) FREEDOM OF TRADE IN THE BASIN OF THE CONGO; (2) THE SLAVE TRADE; (3) NEUTRALITY OF THE TERRITORIES IN THE BASIN OF THE CONGO; (4) NAVIGATION OF THE CONGO; (5) NAVIGATION OF THE NIGER; AND (6) RULES FOR FUTURE OCCUPATION ON THE COAST OF THE AFRICAN CONTINENT
In the Name of God Almighty.
Her Majesty the Queen of the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Ireland, Empress of India; His Majesty the German Emperor, King of Prussia; His Majesty the Emperor of Austria, King of Bohemia, etc, and Apostolic King of Hungary; His Majesty the King of the Belgians; His Majesty the King of Denmark; His Majesty the King of Spain; the President of the United States of America; the President of the French Republic; His Majesty the King of Italy; His Majesty the King of the Netherlands, Grand Duke of Luxemburg, etc; His Majesty the King of Portugal and the Algarves, etc; His Majesty the Emperor of all the Russias; His Majesty the King of Sweden and Norway, etc; and His Majesty the Emperor of the Ottomans,
WISHING, in a spirit of good and mutual accord, to regulate the conditions most favourable to the development of trade and civilization in certain regions of Africa, and to assure to all nations the advantages of free navigation on the two chief rivers of Africa flowing into the Atlantic Ocean;
BEING DESIROUS, on the other hand, to obviate the misunderstanding and disputes which might in future arise from new acts of occupation (prises de possession) on the coast of Africa; and concerned, at the same time, as to the means of furthering the moral and material well-being of the native populations;
HAVE RESOLVED, on the invitation addressed to them by the Imperial Government of Germany, in agreement with the Government of the French Republic, to meet for