A screengrab of the South China Morning Post which featured a front page image of former taoiseach Bertie Ahern. Screengrab: South China Morning Post

Former Taoiseach Bertie Ahern made a surprise appearance on the front page of Hong Kong's South China Morning Post this weekend, shaking hands(...)

From left: Chinese PM Li Keqiang, Myanmar president Thein Sein, US president Barack Obama, Malaysian PM Najib Razak and Russia Federation PM Dmitry Medvedev at the Asean summit. photograph: Gemunu Amarasinghe/AP Photo

Competition between China and the United States for regional influence in Asia is one of the big geopolitical stories and is set to remain so.Against (...)

People buy their breakfast at a roadside snack booth in Beijing:  China’s consumer inflation slowed more than expected in September to a near five-year low, adding to concerns that global growth is cooling fast unless governments take bolder measures to shore up their economies. Photograph: Jason Lee/Reuters

Just as people in an earthquake zone wonder if every tremor is “the big one”, each time China’s economy wobbles, analysts debate whether it is the st(...)

A customer selects fruits at a supermarket in Huaibei, Anhui province. China’s inflation rate slowed more than expected in September to a near five-year low

China’s consumer inflation slowed more than expected in September to a near five-year low, adding to concerns that global growth is cooling fast unle(...)

Demonstrators gather outside the Central Government Offices in the Admiralty business district of Hong Kong. Photograph: Brent Lewin/Bloomberg

Hundreds of student activists camped overnight at major protest sites in Hong Kong as the democracy movement sought to re-gather momentum after the go(...)

Pro-democracy protesters warn they will escalate their actions and block government headquarters again if there is no negotiation. Photograph: Mast Irham/EPA

Tens of thousands of democracy activists took to the streets of Hong Kong again last night to renew their demands for free elections, two weeks into (...)

 Founder and executive chairman of Alibaba Group Jack Ma   at the New York Stock Exchange last week. Photograph:   Andrew Burton/Getty Images

Jack Ma’s Alibaba juggernaut has been unavoidable in the past week in China, and indeed in many other markets, after becoming the biggest initial publ(...)

Chinese Premier Li Keqiang:  not worried about the possibility of a “hard landing” for the world’s second largest economy. Photograph: Feng Li/Pool/Reuters

Premier Li Keqiang took to the stage of the World Economic Forum in Tianjin last week to reassure investors anxious about China’s economic growth outl(...)

A man rows a boat on a river in front of new properties in Taiyuan, Shanxi province. Photograph: Reuters

In a situation eerily reminiscent of the perfect storm that engulfed Irish property developers at the end of the boom, fears are growing over the astr(...)

Sky high:  workers have just topped off the Shanghai Tower, currently the world’s second-largest skyscraper.  Photograph: Reuters

Clifford CoonanTaking a good, stand-back reading of the Chinese economy is always a difficult task, especially if one’s spectacles do not happen to be(...)