Intellectual Property Rights in India

Number of patents granted by India shot up by 50% in 2017: UNIOCR


Mains Paper 3: Science & Technology | Indigenization of technology & developing new technology

From UPSC perspective, the following things are important:

Prelims level: WIPO Report 2018

Mains level: India’s position in innovation and measures required to promote innovation culture.


  • The number of patents granted by India shot up by 50 per cent in 2017, keeping up a trend of steep increases, according to the UN’s World Intellectual Property Organisation (WIPO).

World Intellectual Property Report 2018

  1. The patents granted by India increased from 8,248 in 2016 to 12,387 last year, a/c to the WIPO’s World Intellectual Property Indicators 2018 report released in Geneva.
  2. Last year’s number was more than double the 6,022 patents granted in 2015, according to WIPO statistics.
  3. In 2016, 1,115 patents went to domestic individuals or entities and 7,133 to foreigners; And in 2015, 822 were granted to applicants in India and 5,200 to foreigners.
  4. While India ranked 10th in the number of patents given last year, no Indian company or university figures in last year’s global list of the top 50 patent applicants.
  5. Pharmaceuticals accounted for 15.7 per cent of the Indian domestic applications for patents last year, the report said.

China is at the Top

  1. China’s patent authority led the world in the number of patents granted with 420,144 and was followed by the US with 318,829, according to the WIPO.
  2. 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.
  3. China received 1.38 million patent applications – which are an indication of patents in the pipeline – more than double that of the US, which had 606,956 applications.

Why such rise?

  1. Demand for IP (intellectual property) 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
  2. The WIPO said the steep increase in the number was driven by patents granted to foreigners, which accounted for 85 per cent of the total increase.
  3. Globally, 1.4 million patents were granted in 2017, the report estimated.

Navigate to this page for more readings on WIPO:

[Prelims Spotlight] World Intellectual Property Organisation (WIPO), Forest Carbon Partnership Facility(FCPF)

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