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China. Intellectual property in numbers

May 31, 2020

Day by day, more and more customers are showing interest in patenting issues in a country like China. After all, it is no secret that this country is ahead of the rest in many respects.
It is interesting how the situation with patenting in China is. Let’s look in numbers.
Statistics on intellectual property data in 2019 indicate the following: the percentage of granting patents for inventions was 44.3%, the percentage of granting patents for utility models was 79.9%. These are very good indicators, especially with regard to utility models.
Below you can see a diagram of the trends in filing applications for various patents in 2015-2019, which makes it clear that the most popular patent in China is a utility model, the number of filed applications for this object increases from year to year.

The percentage of granted patents is shown in the diagram below. As you can see, the percentage of patents granted for all objects in 2019 decreased compared to 2018, however, remains at a high level for utility models and industrial designs.

It should be pointed out that the total number of applications filed for an invention in China in 2019 amounted to 1.401 million, which is 9.1% less than the previous year; the number of patents granted for an invention amounted to 453 000, which is 4.8% more compared to the previous year.
In 2019, decisions were made on a total of 1,023 million applications for the invention, while the percentage of granting a patent was 44.3%, which is 9.2% less than 53.5% in 2018.

Data comparison in 2019 and 2018

 

Category

2019

2018

 

Invention

Number of applications

1400661

1542002

 

Number of patents

452804

432147

 
 

 

 

 

In 2019, the number of applications filed decreased by 141341, and the number of patents granted increased by 20657.
Below you can see the Top 10 Chinese most filed enterprises for invention patents granted in 2019 (excluding Hong Kong, Macau and Taiwan).
 

Position

Company

Volume

1

Huawei Technologies

4510

2

China Petroleum & Chemical Corporation

2883

3

Guang Dong OPPO Mobile Telecommunications Corp., Ltd.

2614

4

BOE Technology Group Co., Ltd

2393

5

Tencent Technology (Shenzhen) Company Limited

2146

6

Gree Electric Appliances, Inc. of Zhuhai

1739

7

Lenovo (Beijing) Co.,Ltd.

1706

8

ZTE Corporation

1472

9

Vivo Mobile Communications Co., Ltd.

1388

10

CorporationPetroChina Company Limited

985

From January to December 2019, 2.268 million applications for a utility model were filed, and 1.582 million were issued in China. By the end of December 2019, the number of valid patents for a utility model was 5.262 million.
In 2019, decisions were made on a total of 1.981 million applications for a utility model, while the percentage of issuance was 79.9%, an increase of 1% compared to 78.9% in 2018.

Data comparison in 2019 and 2018

 

Category

2019

2018

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Number of applications

2268190

2072311

 

Utility model

 

 

 

 

Number of patents

1582274

1479062

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

In 2019, the number of applications and patents filed increased by 195879 and 103212, respectively.
From January to December, 712000 industrial design patent applications were filed and 557000 were issued in China. By the end of December 2019, the number of valid patents for an industrial design was 1.79 million.
In 2019, decisions were made on a total of 744000 applications for industrial design, while the percentage of granting a patent was 74.9%, decreasing by 5.5% from 80.4% in 2018.

Data comparison in 2019 and 2018

 

Category

2019

2018

 

Industrial design

Number of applications

711617

708799

 

 

 

 

 

Number of patents

556529

536251

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Over the past year, the number of applications and patents filed increased by 2818 and 20278, respectively.
In 2019, China received a total of 61000 international PCT applications, which is 10.4% more than last year. Among them, 57000 were Chinese, which is 9.4% more than last year. The main 3 provinces of China (regions and cities) for PCT international patent applications are Guangdong (24700), Beijing (7200) and Jiangsu (6600).
A total of 55000 requests for re-examinations were also received, and 37000 cases were closed in China. 6000 requests for invalidation were received and 5000 cases were closed.
In addition, the number of patent applications for inventions from abroad reached 157000, which is 6.0% more than in the previous year.
In terms of country breakdown, Japan, the United States and Germany took the first 3 places in filing applications for inventions in China with the number of applications 49000, 39000 and 16000, which is 7.9%, 1.5% and 6.4% year-on-year respectively.
U.S. patent applications for Chinese companies show the fastest growth in 2019.
Statistics show that the total number of patents issued by the United States to mainland Chinese companies grew by 34% in 2019, which is the strongest growth among the largest economically developed countries.
U.S. filings reached an all-time high in 2019, when 333530 patents were granted, an unprecedented 15% increase over 2018, according to an annual report published by IFI Claims, a New Haven-based patent service.
Applications of Chinese companies from mainland China increased from 12599 to 16900, registering an increase of 34.14%. The number of applications from US companies increased by 15.95%, which resulted in the second fastest growth.
According to the report, the United States own a 49% share of U.S. patents granted in 2019, followed by Japan and Korea. China increased its share up to 5% and took fourth place, overtaking Germany for the first time.
Two mainland Chinese companies are in the top 15 this year. Huawei climbed six positions to 10, while BOE Technology climbed four positions to 13.
In addition, the top 10 fastest growing technologies in terms of US patent growth include the CRISPR technology, the creation of new hybrid plants, dashboards (mainly related to automobiles), 3D printing and pharmaceuticals (especially for cancer treatment).
Thus, based on the presented statistical information, we can conclude that in intellectual property issues, in terms of the number of applications filed and patents received, China is a leader and seeks to increase the number of its intellectual property not only in its country, but far beyond it as well.

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Author of article

Olga Dolgikh

Olga Dolgikh

Head of Department / Patent Attorney/ Mechanics Engineer