The middle class in China is often mentioned in the media; defining the middle cl ass and determining the pace of its development, however, is subject to much debate and contention. The rising numbers in Asia's middle class are also expected to be a boon for the Australian economy, especially in the tourism sector. How is the middle class defined? What will be the implications for China and the rest of the world? Commentators often say that China needs to rebalance towards more domestic consumption, to fix current global financial imbalances. Rising incomes in China may be good for world financial stability, but not necessarily for Chinese political stability.