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China Releases Patent Filing Data for First Half of 2020 Showing Full Recovery from Coronavirus-Induced Drop

In a press conference on July 9, 2020, the China National Intellectual Property Administration (CNIPA) released high-level patent filing data for the first half of 2020. Highlights included 683 thousand invention patents filed, 217 thousand invention patents grants, and 29 thousand Patent Cooperation Treaty (PCT) applications were filed.  The number of Chinese invention patent applications now slightly exceed 2019 year on year (649,129 invention patent applications were filed in H1 2019) showing full recovery from the prior drop in filings at the peak of the coronavirus in China.

In terms of patents, in the first half of the year, China had 683,000 invention patent applications filed and a total of 217,000 invention patents were granted. Out of the 217,000 invention patent granted, 176,000 were from Chinese entities. The top Chinese grantees were Huawei Technologies Co., Ltd. with 2772 patents, OPPO Guangdong Mobile Communications Co., Ltd. with 1925 patents, and BOE Technology Group Co., Ltd. with 1432 patents.

China’s invention patent examination period is 20.3 months (versus 23.1 months at the U.S. Patent & Trademark Office), high-value patent examination period is 15.2 months, utility model examination period is 6.4 months, and design examination period is 3.2 months.

As of the end of June 2020, the effective number of invention patents in mainland China (excluding Hong Kong, Macao and Taiwan) was 1.96 million, and the number of invention patents per 10,000 population reached 14.3. In the first half of the year, the top three provinces (autonomous regions and municipalities) in China by patent density (invention patents per 10,000 population) are: Beijing (141.5), Shanghai (56.1), and Jiangsu (31.9). 

Of the 29 thousand PCT applications filed, the top three provinces (autonomous regions and municipalities)  were: Guangdong with 10,900 PCT applications, Beijing 3,800 PCT applications, and Jiangsu 3,300 PCT applications. Of the 29 thousand PCT applications, 26,800 PCT applications were filed by Chinese entities, implying the balance were filed by foreign entities in China.

In the first half of the year, there were 2.195 million applications for three types of patents – invention patent, utility model and design. In the first half of the year, there were 229,000 Chinese companies applying for patents, an increase of 32,000 compared with the same period last year. Chinese enterprises submitted a total of 404,000 invention patent applications, an increase of 12.0% year-on-year.  That means that foreign patent applicants are responsible for 41% of Chinese invention patent application filings (versus 52.3% in 2018 at the U.S. Patent & Trademark Office).

In terms of trademarks, in the first half of the year, the number of trademark applications in China was 4.284 million; the number of trademark registrations was 2.629 million. As of the end of June 2020, the number of valid registered trademarks in China was 27.414 million.

CNIPA will likely release more detailed data next week.

CNIPA Press Conference for H1 2020
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Author:
Director of China Intellectual Property Practice

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