A former immigration minister says wealthy Chinese investors have been heading for New Zealand since Canada closed its business immigration category this year.
Tuariki John Delamere, who set up an immigration consultancy after leaving Parliament in 1999, said thousands of people had their Canadian applications terminated.
He said many were looking for another option and New Zealand and Australia were the most attractive destinations.
"The UK's difficult to get into these days as is America so New Zealand and Australia are probably the two best options for most of those people."
Mr Delamere said there were also would-be Chinese investors looking for a bolt-hole from their government's crackdown on corruption.
The number of investor applications has already surged from 50 four years ago to 800 last year.