Monday, August 04, 2008

WIPO Releases 2008 Worldwide Patent Report

The World Intellectual Property Organization (WIPO) has released "The World Patent Report: A Statistical Review," which is an annual publication, and the 2008 edition is the third edition in the series. The reports are part of a continuing effort at WIPO to "improve statistical information on patent activity covering as many countries as possible across the world and to develop and provide new indicators that are relevant to current policy issues."

Some notable statistics:

• Patent applications filed across the world are estimated to be 1.76 million, representing a 4.9% increase from the previous year. The number of filings worldwide by applicants from China, the Republic of Korea and the United States of America increased by 32.1%, 6.6% and 6.7% respectively.

• Although the number of patent applications filed across the world has increased at a steady pace, the rate of increase is less than the rate of increase observed for other economic indicators such as GDP and trade.

• Approximately 727,000 patents were granted across the world. Similar to patent filings, patent grants are concentrated in a small number of countries. Applicants from Japan, the United States of America, the Republic of Korea and Germany received 73% of total patent grants worldwide. Between 2000 and 2006, the number of patents granted to applicants from China and the Republic of Korea grew by 26.5% and 23.2% a year, respectively (average annual growth rate).

• Approximately 6.1 million patents were in force in 2006. The largest number of patents in force were in the United States of America (1.8 million in 2006). However, the majority of patents in force were owned by applicants from Japan.

• In 2005, a large number of patent filings were filed across the world in computer technology (144,594), telecommunications (116,770), and electrical machinery (121,350) technologies. Between 2001 and 2005, patent filings in computer technology, optics, and semiconductors grew by 5.3%, 5.0% and 4.9%, a year, respectively. There was a modest increase in pharmaceuticals filings (1.7%) and a decrease in biotechnology filings (-2.7%).

View the on-line report here (link)

Download a PDF copy here (link)

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