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The Prime Minister is leading the largest ever trade delegation to China. But what value do these junkets really deliver?

Satyajit Das: China sets out on long march back to self-reliance as trade gets rough

Midweek View: The country has become increasingly resentful about the destruction of the value of its savings
Zhang Yimou: The director is said to have violated China’s one-child policy

And... cut! Chinese director accused of having too many children

One of China’s top film directors is being investigated for allegedly fathering seven children in violation of the country’s strict one-child policy.

Boost for City as Sir Mervyn King does currency swap deal with Bank of China

The Bank of England today took a crucial step towards boosting the City as a centre of trading in the Chinese renminbi after agreeing a currency swap deal with the Bank of China.

HSBC launches London renminbi bond

HSBC has became the first company in the world to launch a renminbi-denominated bond outside a sovereign Chinese territory.

China has strict family planning rules that usually allow couples in cities to have just one child

China's new export to America: A baby boom

The Year of the Dragon is behind a spike in birth rates – and there's only one way to avoid the one-child policy and get better medical care. In Beijing, Clarissa Sebag-Montefiore reports on the rise of maternity tourism

Icap sees rays of light as volumes rise

Shares in Icap, the broking giant founded and run by Michael Spencer, soared yesterday after it said everything in the City is not quite as gloomy as people feared.

Small Talk: Sinclair boosts portfolio with £21m Advanced Bio-Technologies deal

Sinclair Pharma and IS Pharma agreed to merge in April, with shares in the combined business (imaginatively christened Sinclair IS Pharma) starting trading in late May. Since then, the stock has been under pressure, easing as volatility in the wider market gathered pace. But the share price received a shot in the arm last week, after the company, which specialises in dermatological and wound care treatments, unveiled plans to buy the privately held US biotech company, Advanced Bio-Technologies (ABT).

Development drag: The potential growth in South East Asia is one area targeted by frontier funds

Is the frontier market still too wild and risky?

It's tempting to seek large returns in volatile sectors – but be careful, warns Emma Dunkley

Leading article: The dangers of no deal in Durban

Amid the furore over the eurozone crisis and this week's make-or-break meeting in Brussels, another equally important summit is in danger of being forgotten.

Saab faces court bid to lift bankruptcy protection

The Swedish car manufacturer Saab faced another escalation in its financial woes yesterday after a court-appointed administrator asked for the removal of its protection from bankruptcy.

Stephen Maguire hopes that Judd Trump (pictured) doesn't fall into the same 'trap' that he did

Snooker: Maguire warns Trump: Do not repeat my mistakes

Stephen Maguire, a former UK Championship winner, is hoping the game's latest exciting prospect, Judd Trump, will not let the trappings of his new-found success go to his head.

Fears for foreign business executives as CEO is jailed in China

An Australian businessman detained in southern China was sentenced yesterday to 13 years in jail for embezzlement and bribery.

David Thomas: The world's most useless creatures

Pandas are the WAGs of the animal kingdom: superficially attractive, but talentless

George Osborne visits a bicycle shop in Middlesex in a week when the Chancellor described growth of 0.2 per cent as 'positive'

Mary Dejevsky: Why this obsession with growth?

Growth, growth, growth... The regrettable lack of it and the imperative to encourage it were the guiding themes of the Chancellor's Autumn Statement, as they have been of practically anything anyone has said about the economy for years. Higher growth boosts national wealth and national morale; falling growth pushes countries into recession, which makes them feel, deservedly, very bad. So runs the consensus.

Deng Xiaoping And The Transformation Of China, By Ezra F Vogel

In the preface to his exhaustive biography of the Chinese statesman Deng Xiaoping, Ezra F Vogel recalls the moment the seed for the book was planted. Vogel, a professor at Harvard who has spent his career immersed in Japan and China, asked a seasoned journalist: "What would best help Americans understand coming developments in Asia" at the start of the 21 century? Without hesitation his friend replied: "Deng Xiaoping."

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Mullah Omar, creator of the Taliban, is dead... for the fourth time

Mullah Omar, creator of the Taliban, is dead... again

I was once told that intelligence services declare their enemies dead to provoke them into popping up their heads and revealing their location, says Robert Fisk
Margaret Attwood on climate change: 'Time is running out for our fragile, Goldilocks planet'

Margaret Attwood on climate change

The author looks back on what she wrote about oil in 2009, and reflects on how the conversation has changed in a mere six years
New Dr Seuss manuscript discovered: What Pet Should I Get? goes on sale this week

New Dr Seuss manuscript discovered

What Pet Should I Get? goes on sale this week
Oculus Rift and the lonely cartoon hedgehog who could become the first ever virtual reality movie star

The cartoon hedgehog leading the way into a whole new reality

Virtual reality is the 'next chapter' of entertainment. Tim Walker gives it a try
Ants have unique ability to switch between individual and collective action, says study

Secrets of ants' teamwork revealed

The insects have an almost unique ability to switch between individual and collective action
Donovan interview: The singer is releasing a greatest hits album to mark his 50th year in folk

Donovan marks his 50th year in folk

The singer tells Nick Duerden about receiving death threats, why the world is 'mentally ill', and how he can write a song about anything, from ecology to crumpets
Twitter accused of 'Facebookisation' over plans to overhaul reverse-chronological timeline

Twitter accused of 'Facebookisation'

Facebook exasperates its users by deciding which posts they can and can’t see. So why has Twitter announced plans to do the same?
Jane Birkin asks Hermès to rename bag - but what else could the fashion house call it?

Jane Birkin asks Hermès to rename bag

The star was shocked by a Peta investigation into the exotic skins trade
10 best waterproof mascaras

Whatever the weather: 10 best waterproof mascaras

We found lash-enhancing beauties that won’t budge no matter what you throw at them
Diego Costa biography: Chelsea striker's route to the top - from those who shared his journey

Diego Costa: I go to war. You come with me...

Chelsea's rampaging striker had to fight his way from a poor city in Brazil to life at the top of the Premier League. A new book speaks to those who shared his journey
Ashes 2015: England show the mettle to strike back hard in third Test

England show the mettle to strike back hard in third Test

The biggest problem facing them in Birmingham was the recovery of the zeitgeist that drained so quickly under the weight of Australian runs at Lord's, says Kevin Garside
Women's Open 2015: Charley Hull - 'I know I'm a good golfer but I'm also just a person'

Charley Hull: 'I know I'm a good golfer but I'm also just a person'

British teen keeps her feet on ground ahead of Women's Open
Turkey's conflict with Kurdish guerrillas in Iraq can benefit Isis in Syria

Turkey's conflict with Kurdish guerrillas in Iraq can benefit Isis in Syria

Turkish President Erdogan could benefit politically from the targeting of the PKK, says Patrick Cockburn
Yvette Cooper: Our choice is years of Tory rule under Jeremy Corbyn or a return to a Labour government

Our choice is years of Tory rule under Corbyn or a return to a Labour government

Yvette Cooper urged Labour members to 'get serious' about the next general election rather than become 'a protest movement'
Singapore's domestic workers routinely exploited and often abused in the service of rich nationals

Singapore's hidden secret of domestic worker abuse

David Cameron was shown the country's shiniest veneer on his tour. What he didn't see was the army of foreign women who are routinely exploited and often abused in the service of rich nationals