Korean intellectual property applications exceed 557,000 in 2020, a record high

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Release time:2021-01-16

According to the KIPO report of 13 January 2021, last year, despite the global spread of the epidemic and the great restrictions on economic activity, the number of intellectual property applications containing inventions (including utility models, the same below), designs and trademarks reached 557,229 (an increase of 9.1 percent over last year), a record high. In particular, applications from small and medium-sized enterprises have increased significantly; by industry category, applications in the digital economy (e-commerce), medical and pharmaceutical fields have increased significantly, but applications from foreigners have decreased by 6.3, as detailed below.
 
According to the category of rights, 257,933 applications were filed for trademarks (up 16.4 per cent), 231,740 applications for inventions (up 3.3 per cent) and 67,556 applications for designs (up 3.9 per cent). In particular, trademark applications have shown the greatest growth rate in the last 20 years. (The source of the chart below is the KIPO report).

Volume, increase/decrease rate by category of applicant

 

small and medium-sized enterprises

Individual

Universities, Public Research Institutions

Large enterprises

Foreigners

Other

Total

2019

142,997

173,284

29,296

51,953

84,288

29,150

510,968

2020

(increase/decrease rate)

168,456

(17.8%)

195,407

(12.8%)

30,777

(5.1%)

53,981

(3.9%)

79,016

(-6.3%)

29,592

(1.5%)

557,229

(9.1%)

 
By industry category, it showed relatively high application growth rates in areas related to outbreak response and contactless technology.
 
In terms of invention patents, e-commerce applications (10,407) had the largest growth rate of 8.4 per cent, while medical (9,983, up 8.1 per cent), pharmaceutical (4,380, up 4.8 per cent) and biological (4,566, up 2.7 per cent) also showed an increasing trend.
 
 

Top 5 Invention Patent Applications in 2020

Top 5 growth rates of invention patent applications in 2020

Technical Field

2019

2020

Growth rate

Technical Field

2019

2020

Growth rate

Electrical/Energy

14,145

13,932

-1.5%

Electronic Commerce

9,601

10,407

8.4%

Computer Technology

10,803

10,655

-1.4%

Medical Technology

9,233

9,983

8.1%

Electronic Commerce

9,601

10,407

8.4%

Medicine

4,181

4,380

4.8%

Medical Technology

9,233

9,983

8.1%

Measurement

6,919

7,156

3.4%

Semiconductor

9,973

9,418

-5.6%

Biological

4,445

4,566

2.7% 


 
In terms of design, the largest number of applications were made for packaging products, with an increase of 125.9 per cent in applications in the field of health and hygiene products for family use (3,903), indicating anomalies.
 
 

Top 5 Design Applications in 2020

2020Top 5 growth rates of design applications in

thingsProductClass

2019

2020

IncreaseLongRate

thingsProductClass

2019

2020

IncreaseLongRate

F4 Wrapping paper, containers for packaging

5,799

5,840

0.7%

C4 Household Health Products

1,728

3,903

125.9%

C4 Household Health Products

1,728

3,903

125.9%

F3 Office paper products, printed matter

1,593

2,235

40.3%

H1 Basic Electronic Components

2,736

3,021

10.4%

F1 teaching tools, painting supplies

219

284

29.7%

D2 Furniture

2,730

2,932

7.4%

K2 Fishery equipment

331

414

25.1%

M1 fabric paper, disc, rope

3,432

2,919

-14.9%

B1 Clothing

1,948

2,380

22.2% 

 

In terms of trademarks, there was a significant increase in applications for medical equipment (8,391 pieces, up 42.7 per cent) and pharmaceuticals (14,530 pieces, up 31.3 per cent). With the increase in personal broadcasting such as YouTube, the broadcasting and communication industry (7,998 pieces, up 37.3 per cent) and the electronic audio and video equipment category (26,865 pieces, up 18.0 per cent) also achieved high growth rates. In addition, trademark applications related to the service industry also showed a high growth rate of 12.6 per cent.

 

Top 5 Trademark Applications in 2020

2020Top 5 growth rates of trademark applications in

PointsClass

2019

2020

IncreaseLongRate

PointsClass

2019

2020

IncreaseLongRate

35 Wholesale and Retail Trade

39,016

45,753

17.3%

10 Medical Equipment

5,880

8,391

42.7%

9 Electronic products, audio and video equipment

22,760

26,865

18.0%

38 Broadcasting and Communication Industry

5,825

7,998

37.3%

43 Canteen, Accommodation

20,320

23,399

15.2%

5 Medicines

11,064

14,530

31.3%

3 Cosmetics

22,723

23,139

1.8%

9 Electronic products, audio and video equipment

22,760

26,865

18.0%

25 Clothing and shoes

14,877

16,489

10.8%

31 Agricultural products

3,586

4,212

17.5% 

 

KIPO said that despite the severity of the epidemic, bold investment in research and development could lead to a sharp increase in intellectual property applications, which also shows that South Korea's economic prospects are very optimistic.

 

(Excerpted from KIM & CHANG)