China's richest man is on course to join the central committee of the Communist Party.
Newspapers there report that the party has completed background checks on construction billionaire, Liang Wengen, 55. He is tipped for election in October next year.
If so, he will be the first entrepreneur to join the committee, which in effect rules the country.
Mr Liang is chief exective Sany Group. He topped both the Forbes and Hurun rich lists with an estimated wealth of more than $US9 billion.
A BBC correspondent says China's wealthy are increasingly being courted by the party.