Fact of the Week: Foreign Applications for Chinese Patents in Key Technologies are 54 Percent More Likely to be Rejected

Caleb Foote September 21, 2020
September 21, 2020

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Source: Gaétan de Rassenfosse and Emilio Raiteri, “Technology Protectionism and the Patent System: Evidence from China,” September 2020, EFPL Innovation and Intellectual Property Policy Working Paper 11.

Commentary: Individual governments have an incentive to deny foreign patent applications, allowing domestic firms to leverage innovations that would otherwise be protected. A new study has found that the Chinese government does precisely that, comparing the rejection rates of patent applications by nation of origin and the success of that patent application in other nations. It finds that for technologies that China has identified as strategic, a patent application’s risk of rejection rises from 16.6 to 25.6 percent if it is foreign, an increase of 54 percent.