Later, after New Kowloon was defined from the area between the Boundary Street and the Kowloon Ranges spanned from Lai Chi Kok to Lei Yue Mun, and the extension of the urban areas of Kowloon, New Kowloon was gradually urbanised and absorbed into Kowloon. In modern times New Kowloon is almost always considered part of Kowloon and instead of the New Territories - except statutorily.
Hence, the New Territories now comprises only the mainland north of the Kowloon Ranges and south of the Sham Chun River, as well as the Outlying Islands. It comprises an area of 952 km2 (368 sq mi). Nevertheless, New Kowloon has remained statutorily part of the New Territories instead of Kowloon.
The New Territories were leased from Qing China to the United Kingdom in 1898 for 99 years in the Second Convention of Peking (The Convention for the Extension of Hong Kong Territory). Upon the expiration of the lease, sovereignty was transferred to People's Republic of China in 1997, together with the Qing ceded territories of Hong Kong Island and Kowloon Peninsula.
In 2006, New Territories had a population of 3,573,635 and its population density was 3,748 per km2.