Most of the time, Shanghai just means business, but the city has also played some significant political roles in contemporary Chinese history. The Sino-US Shanghai Communiqué was signed there in 1972, marking a new chapter in ties for the two big nations.
Han Zheng was 48 when first named mayor of Shanghai in 2003, the youngest person to hold the post in 50 years. He is strongly tipped to become the city's party chief and a Politburo member having successfully overseen Shanghai's hosting of the World Expo in 2010, its rise as the world's busiest container port and the current strides it is making towards becoming the top renminbi trading, clearing and pricing centre by 2015. However, his lack of experience outside Shanghai might hinder his chances of becoming a member of the Politburo.