Shein may pull the plug on its highly anticipated £50bn London float amid growing criticism of the Chinese giant’s business practices in the UK, it has been reported.

Shein electronic billboard

Shein’s proposed London float is now in doubt 

Attacks on the brand have come from some politicians, as well as the press, other retailers and investors.

The British Fashion Council is the most recent body to voice its concerns, saying the listing was a “significant concern” to the industry and that “questions remain” about Shein’s business practices.

There is growing disquiet in Beijing at the way Shein is being portrayed in the UK, with some in the upper echelons of the Chinese government irked by the criticism it has received, according to The Mail on Sunday.

Backlash from the council’s US equivalent, the National Retail Federation, was one of the reasons Shein rowed back on its initial plans to float on the New York Stock Exchange.

While Shein has tried to distance itself from its Chinese roots, being based in Singapore, the fast fashion retailer’s products are still manufactured in the country and, as a result, would need approval from regulators in Beijing to list shares in London.

The regulators are thought to have killed its New York listing as a result of worsening diplomatic relations between China and the US.

The Mail on Sunday said authorities in Beijing could now put pressure on Shein to list in Hong Kong instead of London.

The news comes despite Shein’s recent efforts to win over politicians and trade bodies in the UK by hiring PR firms and recently joining the British Retail Consortium.

Its chair Donald Tang has also met with chancellor of the exchequer Jeremy Hunt, as well as with representatives of the Labour Party.

Shein has long been criticised for using suppliers accused of exploiting garment workers with low wages to keep its prices low for consumers.