In this issue

- Doomsayers believe the country is riddled with hidden debts that put it on a par with Greece

- It is still difficult for foreign banks to break in

High stakes in backroom battle

The leadership is in transition, and changes to the political system are under discussion

Shopping at Amway

Consumers: How to find favour down at the shops

Patti Waldmeir discovers how local tastes are influencing multinationals

Industry: Upmarket response to low-cost challenge

Josh Noble outlines the manufacturers’ choice: go up the value chain or go bust

Water: Shortages threaten to hamper growth

Scarcity may play a role in reorienting the economy, says Leslie Hook

Armed forces: Belligerent language masks limited capability

Kathrin Hille considers the fruits of modernisation

Chinese President Hu Jintao, left, chats with Vice-President Xi Jinping as they leave the Great Hall of the People

The leadership: Focus on the next generation as transition gets under way

Jamil Anderlini profiles the men likely to run the country

Foreign banks: Restrictions make for a waiting game

Simon Rabinovitch on the frustrations of excessive red tape

Innovation: Autocratic directives fail to spark creativity

Jamil Anderlini looks at obstacles to invention

Education: A system in dire need of reform

There is a mismatch between academic qualifications and the employment market

Debt: Argument over burden divides experts

Simon Rabinovitch sets about finding the true picture

Commodities: Markets watch out for hints of moderating demand

Despite the fall in global commodities indices, Chinese demand is not disappearing just yet, says Leslie Hook

Automobiles: Time for a reality check in world’s largest car market

Extraordinary growth last year has cleaned out inventories, writes Patti Waldmeir