Ken Livingstone has vowed to bring in Chinese investment to boost Croydon’s regeneration if elected Mayor of London in 2012.

The Labour heavyweight said Croydon’s success was “vital” to London’s post-recession future, as he made his fourth campaigning visit to the borough since putting himself forward as Mayoral candidate in June.

He also shared his plans for reviving the stalled Crystal Palace Tramlink extension during the trip to East Croydon station yesterday, saying he would find the £150m necessary to get the scheme going.

He said: “Outside of the West End, the City and Canary Wharf, Croydon is the biggest centre of employment that we have really got.

“For London to realise its potential Croydon has got to get investment and I think for many years it’s been neglected.”

He also promised to get a team working on renewing the Crystal Palace tramlink extension within 48 hours if elected.

Mr Livingstone is making a renewed bid to become Mayor of London after being ousted from the role by Boris Johnson in 2008.

Former Bethnal Green MP Oona King is also in the running to be named Labour candidate in September, along with party activists Seton During and Emmanuel Okoro.