In Beijing’s Great Hall of the People, the second day of China’s week-long National Congress got under way under heavy guard.
New figures show that China’s economy is pulling away from its slowest growth in three years.
Wei Yao, a Chinese economist said: “We’re seeing a lot of green shoots that since the growth China is at the beginning of a cyclical rebound.”
But critics say that without further reform of the state sector,the growth will stagnate.
Vice President Xi Jinping is the man expected to take over from President Hu Jintao.
He will be under pressure to resolve the widening gap between rich and poor, as well as issues like pollution and food security as the country’s agriculture faces growing land, water and labour shortages.
As crowds across China watched their leader on the big screen, many were clear that more progress was needed.
In Zinyi City, Guizhou Province, in southwest China, one man said: “I paid close attention to the policies related to people’s livelihood, and I hope we will further deepen the reform and opening-up, making our country stronger.”
In Jinggangshan City, Jiangxi Province, in east China, one woman declared: “Although our living standards have improved a lot, medical and educational provisions are still lacking in middle- and small-sized cities. I hope these problems will be addressed.”
In a country that is home to a fifth of the world’s population, this once-in-a-decade leadership transition, and the decisions the new President makes, will be watched closely.