This represents 60% of the total for the programme as a whole, according to the Immigration and Borders Service (SEF).
In all 3,588 permits were issued to Chinese applicants from 2013 to the end of last year. In total, since the Residence Authorisations for Investment (ARI) programme was launched in October 2012, it has attracted investment of €3,411,265,842.39.
Last year Chinese investment under the scheme totalled €306,397,093.97 – down 37% on 2016 – with 538 residence permits being issued, down from 848.
By far the best year in terms of Chinese investment was 2014, when the programme brought in almost €711 million and 1,235 permits were issued.
Citizens of Brazil, meanwhile, have invested a cumulative total of €400 million, with 473 permits being issued between 2013 and 2017. Brazil is the second country, after China, in terms of permits issued.
Last year, investors from Brazil put in almost €179 million, making it the best year ever on that measure.
South Africa, the third most important country in the scheme, is the origin of a cumulative €140 million euros, accounting for 218 permits.
Total investment under the ARI scheme last year slipped 3.4% to €844 million.
Property continues to be the main destination for investment, with almost €771 million last year – the vast bulk of it for purchases (for which the eligibility threshold is €500,000) rather than purchase with rehabilitation (for which the threshold is €350,000), for which 75 residence permits were issued. The separate criterion of transfer of capital (minimum €1 million) brought in more than €73 million last year, with 70 permits being issued on this basis. For the creation of at least 10 jobs, the other criterion, just two permits were issued.
In all, since ARIs were launched, a total of 5,553 have been issued.