EPO has now published the preliminary figures as to number of patent applications received in 2012. The impressive 258,000 filings were an 5.7 % increase over 2011. The number of granted patents amounted to 65,700, which was 5.8 % more than the year before.
The majority of the filings – 63 % - come from non-European countries and the rest – 37 % - come from the EPO (European Patent Office) member states. The top five positions are once again held by the US (24.7 %), Japan (19.9 %), Germany (13.4 %), China (7.3 %) and Korea (5.5 %). Europe is without a doubt an attractive market for non-European companies, especially American and Asian companies.
Considering the size (population) of the countries, Switzerland, number seven on the list of number of EP filings, was actually number 1 (more than 1000 filings per million habitants) and Sweden number two, with half of that (approx 500 per million habitants).
EPO list: Top 50 countries of origin