China is increasingly flexing its legal muscles to protect consumers against everything from illegally fixed prices to, it seems, over-the-top product packaging.

Friday’s official Shanghai Daily reports a slap on the wrist for some cosmetic firms guilty of having “too much empty space in the packaging”. Read more

Is it party time again for Chinese distillers? It has been a rough few months for the makers of China’s fiery baijiu spirits. Their sales and stock prices slumped after Xi Jinping, the incoming president, railed against corruption and banned the boozy banquets loved by officials across the country.

But like a passed-out drinker getting a second wind, the distillers picked themselves off the floor in rousing fashion to end the week. The share prices of many of China’s biggest brands – Kweichou Moutai, Wuliangye and Jiugui – leaped 4-10 per cent over the last three days of the week, while the broader Chinese stock market fell 5 per cent, its worst week since mid-2011. Read more

Moutai, China’s most famous form of firewater, has been banned from some official banquets recently – but it clearly still has friends in high places.

Kweichow Moutai, the preferred tipple at government festivities, has passed the first hurdle to be declared China’s only “national liquor”. Not surprisingly, this has annoyed other distillers of firewater, who claim the decision is anti-competitive. Read more