Guangdong's party congress, which opens on Monday, may give a hint as to who will succeed Governor Huang Huahua but it will not decide the fate of party secretary Zhang Dejiang .
A government source said representatives to this autumn's 17th Communist Party congress would be elected at the five-day meeting, as well as members of the Guangdong Party Committee and its disciplinary committee.
The 53 party committee members will in turn elect members to the standing committee, who elect the vice-party secretaries, a source from the party school said.
'The party secretary's position will not be decided at this meeting,' the government source said.
Party officials said this week that next week's meeting would be attended by 905 representatives, with 67.8 per cent drawn from party cadres, and the remainder ordinary members, including six representing migrant workers.
The new vice-party secretaries to be elected will give an indication as to who is likely to take over from Mr Huang, whose term runs until spring next year, analysts said.
There has been speculation that Shenzhen Communist Party secretary Li Hongzhong is a frontrunner for the governor's job.
Mr Zhang, once touted as one of the mainland's fifth-generation leaders, is rumoured to be going to Beijing for a new appointment.
Retired Sun Yat-sen University professor Yuan Weishi , one of Mr Zhang's strongest early critics, said the 'Guangdong effect' worked on him as it did on his predecessor, Li Changchun , an ultra-leftist when he arrived in the province.
'He was very terrible in the beginning but since 2005 there has been a marked change in his thinking. It's Guangdong that has affected him,' Professor Yuan said. 'The central government sent people who were very close-minded to change Guangdong but the opposite happened.'
Mr Zhang, a North Korean-trained economist, is a Liaoning native who was commended for promoting the growth of the private sector in Zhejiang , where he was party boss.
The Guangdong congress will run from Monday to Friday.