Doubts are growing about whether China can pass the US to become the world's biggest economy this century amid warnings that the country’s 30-year miracle is nearing exhaustion.
The world's tallest tower should have been built by now. Officials said last year that the great edifice with 220 floors would be erected in three months flat in China's inland city of Changsha by March, snatching the crown from Dubai's Burj Khalifa.
Prime minister Li Keqiang has asked the State Council to clamp down on the excesses of the regions. Not before time. A top regulator says local government finances are "out of control".
Mr Li aims to cut China's economic growth to a safe speed limit of 7pc next year and rein in rampant investment – still a world record 49pc of GDP – before it traps the country in a boom-bust dynamic of frightening scale.
Vested interests are conspiring to stop him, launching a counter-attack from their power-base in the $6 trillion state industries. Even so, uber-growth is surely over.
China's catch-up spurt has a few more years to run in the Western hinterlands perhaps, but when the full story comes out we may find that nationwide growth has already fallen below 7pc.
Mr Li complained in a US diplomatic cable released on WikiLeaks that Chinese GDP statistics are "man-made"(Shangai statistics..!) , confiding to a US diplomat that he tracked electricity use, rail cargo, and bank loans to gauge growth. For a while, analysts use electricity data as a proxy for GDP but the commissars kept a step ahead by ordering power utilities to fiddle the figures.(wow. That's 'innovative'!):P
Above point were raised by Indian BR members, then it was shouted down as a myth by chinese members.