A drop in clean energy investment in China has dented global figures at the start of 2016, according to Bloomberg New Energy Finance (BNEF).

Global clean energy investment fell by 12% year-on-year to $53.1 billion (£36.9bn) in the first three months of the year.

The decrease marked a 22% drop quarter-on-quarter.

BNEF said China’s investment stood at $11.8bn, down 50% quarter-on-quarter and 37% year-on-year following a rush to develop solar and wind schemes before a government tariff was closed.

Tough 2016 ahead

Michael Liebreich, chairman of the advisory board at BNEF, said: “Based on Q1 figures, 2016 is going to be hard-pressed to beat last year’s record investment total.

“The fundamentals behind global clean energy investment remain strong, with our latest research showing solar PV and wind again reducing their costs and competing strongly despite lower coal, oil and gas prices.

“But China accounted for more than one third of all new financings last year, so what happens there in 2016 will be crucial to the world outturn.”

> See BNEF's figures