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China sees patent growth in digital economy

China's innovative development of the digital economy has promoted rapid patent growth in the core sectors of the industry, said the country's intellectual property regulator on Wednesday.

In 2022, the number of invention patents granted in these sectors reached 296,000, accounting for 42.6 percent of the country's patent volume, with an annual average increase of 22.6 percent since 2016, which is 1.5 times that of the total grant invention patents in the same period, said Ge Shu, a senior official of the National Intellectual Property Administration, at a press conference.

By the end of 2022, the number of valid invention patents in the core industries of the digital economy was 1.273 million, of which the Yangtze River Delta, Guangdong-Hong Kong-Macao Greater Bay Area, and the Beijing-Tianjin-Hebei region accounted for 71.3 percent.

Ge also noted the patents applied by foreign enterprises, saying the number of foreign companies applying for invention patents in these sectors has increased from 6,418 in 2016 to 7,613 in 2022.

By the end of 2022, patent holders from 95 countries and regions owned 327,000 invention patents in the core industries of China's digital economy, Ge said.

In 2022, the scale of China's digital economy increased by 10.3 percent year on year to 50.2 trillion yuan (about 6.99 trillion U.S. dollars), accounting for 41.5 percent of the country's GDP.