Downing Street has denied changing its stance on Tibet to secure lucrative Chinese business contracts.

The claim was made in an editorial in the People's Daily newspaper, which said that UK Government had admitted it mishandled the issue.

The move paved the way for this week's parallel trips by the Chancellor George Osborne and the London Mayor Boris Johnson, it suggested.

The visits follow the "freezing out" of the UK after David Cameron met the Tibetan spiritual leader the Dalai Lama in 2012.

No 10 said there had been "no change" in policy since the meeting, although they added there were "no plans" for the two men to meet again.

The row follows news that Chinese companies could be part of a potentially lucrative drive to build a new generation of nuclear power stations in the UK.

The Chancellor has also unveiled a series of multi-million deals while on the trip, including one for Chinese banks to open in the UK.

The Tory-LibDem government hopes the move could help the UK to become a leading centre for the Chinese currency.

"Our position on Tibet is long-standing and there's been no change," the Prime Minister's official spokesman said. "We want strong commercial and diplomatic ties with China, We want to continue to strengthen those, and that's at the heart of the visit to China that you've seen the chancellor making this week."