The number of Chinese applying to move to the UK via the investor visa process rose to 1,583 last year, from 507 the year before, data obtained by Radius Equity showed.

The increase in applications came ahead of a doubling of the minimum investment to £2m, but also reflected a weakening of the Chinese economy.

Investment visas allow applicants to have UK permanent residency in return for investing in the country. They can then apply for citizenship. Some 85% of applications were successful, down from 99% the prior year.