Wednesday, March 09, 2005

CHINA'S INTERNATIONAL PATENT OUTPUT INCREASES: The number of patents filed under the PCT hit a new record last year with sharp increases from Japan, South Korea and China, a senior U.N. official said Wednesday.

Some 120,100 patents were filed last year under the Patent Cooperation Treaty, said Francis Gurry, deputy director general of the World Intellectual Property Organization.

Patent filings through WIPO have been rising steadily since the treaty system began in 1978, with a total 1 million applications since then. In 2003 there were 115,142 filings.

The most impressive growth, however, came from China, where patent filings rose 37.8 percent to 1,782. Although this represents just a tiny slice of total global applications - and of the 250,000 domestic patents filed in China last year - it is a clear sign that Chinese companies are going global, he said.

"The explanation is essentially that China's enterprises are now operating increasingly in export markets," said Gurry. "I'm sure that over the next five years the number will explode."

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