China outstrips US

GENEVA: The World Intellectual Property Organisation (WIPO) says China cranked out patent applications at a record pace last year. Its total of just under a million outstripped the US and Japan combined. WIPO Director-General Francis Gurry marvelled at China’s ‘extraordinary’ numbers. The Geneva-based body stopped short of drawing firm conclusions about China’s 12.5 per cent increase from 2013, to 928,000 patents. But Gurry noted strategic decisions by Chinese leaders supporting patent applications in areas like telecommunications and solar power. The US had the second-most patent applications at 578,000 while Japan came in third with 325,000. Japanese companies made up seven of the top 10 applicants. Korea’s Samsung was third and US-based IBM eighth.