World Intellectual Property Indicators 2021

This year’s benchmark World Intellectual Property Indicators report confirms that intellectual property (IP) filings – patents, trademarks, designs and others – have proven highly resilient, despite the deepest economic shock of modern times:

  • Patent filings increased by 1.6 per cent in 2020 to just under 3.3 million applications around the world.
  • Designs contained in applications grew by 2 per cent and trademark classes specified in applications rose by 13.7 per cent.

This countercyclical growth underlines the increasingly important role IP, innovation and creativity will play in the global economy and the contribution each will make in driving the post-pandemic recovery forward.

This year’s report also illustrates that IP’s center of gravity continues to shift. This is best evidenced by the ever increasing number of applications in Asia. While a decade ago, 5 out of 10 IP applications were filed in Asia, last year this number was close to 7 out of 10 IP applications.

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