3.17 million patent applications were filed globally in 2017. The latest statistics published by the World Intellectual Property Organisation (WIPO) showed a 5.8 percent increase from 2016 and a year-on-year increase in activity for eight years in a row.
Leading the way
The total amount of trademarks filed globally in 2017 was 12.39 million with industrial designs reaching 1.24 million. China took the top spot with the highest number of intellectual property (IP) rights filed with both internal and external innovators looking to introduce their innovation to one of the world’s biggest economies.
Patents sans frontiers
US residents continued to lead the way in filings outside of their home jurisdiction with almost 250,000 patent applications filed abroad. Other notable countries looking to exploit IP beyond their home territory included Japan, Germany, South Korea and, unsurprisingly, China, which reported a 15 percent growth in overseas filings – the largest of any country.
Spotlight on the creative industries
In a first for the WIPO report, data from the ‘creative economy’ was also included. Splitting the publishing industry across three sectors: trade (novels, fiction etc), education and scientific, technical and medical, the report found revenue generated by the industry amounted to $248 billion USD globally. Again, China reported the largest net revenue at $202.4 billion USD followed by the U.S. generating $25.9 billion USD.
The IP Economy
Speaking at a press conference launching the report, WIPO Director General Francis Gurry, said; “Demand for IP protection is rising faster than the rate of global economic growth, illustrating that IP-backed innovation is an increasingly critical component of competition and commercial activity.”
“In just a few decades, China has constructed an IP system, encouraged homegrown innovation, joined the ranks of the world’s IP leaders - and is now driving worldwide growth in IP filings.”
Mr Gurry also noted how in 2017 the U.S. Supreme Court accepted more IP cases than any other field. This substantial and rapid growth in IP means tools for effectively managing applications and monitoring IP data are more in demand than ever.
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