The annual report of the Patent Authority for 2019 was recently published, which shows that last year 7,738 new patent applications were filed in Israel, an increase of 5% compared to 2018.
The report was written after the outbreak of the corona plague but it refers to the period before the outbreak of the plague and it is very likely that the report that will summarize 2020 already shows a significant decrease in the number of submissions.
Justice Minister Avi Nissenkorn welcomed the report: “The publication of the data is part of a series of steps taken by the Ministry of Justice to increase transparency to the public. This report presents the scope of the Authority’s activities in the past year And on a significant improvement in the provision of the service reflected in shortening exam times, building improved capabilities and expanding the range of services offered to the public. ”
Israel Toito, CEO of Newton Patent Search, read the report and found some surprising data. Israel notes that the report details the patents filed in Israel, but it does not indicate the degree of known innovation of the startup Nation since most Israeli inventions are not registered in Israel at all.
The patents filed in Israel are mainly filed by inventors from abroad
Most of the applications submitted in 2019 in Israel were submitted by foreign companies and inventors and only 1368 of the applications in Israel were submitted by Israelis. This figure is not surprising in light of the fact that the Israeli market is relatively small, both in terms of competitiveness and purchasing power. For most inventions there is no justification for registration in Israel either and therefore inventors from all over the world file their patent applications mainly in China, USA, Japan, South Korea and Europe with China leading by a considerable margin over the rest of the world. Almost every second invention from the world is filed in China.
A 33% decrease in patent filings filed for the first time in Israel
Patents filed in Israel are filed mainly on the basis of earlier filings filed abroad and out of the total number of applications filed with the Israeli Patent Office only 625 were filed for the first time in Israel. This means that inventors choose to defend their invention in other countries, for example Competitors in Israel.
Agreements between countries allow inventors from all over the world to defend their invention in stages. We start with one country and later decide, depending on the results of the exam and the progress of the project, in which other countries it is worth investing in defense.
This arrangement allows the inventor to spread the high expenses involved in registering the patent over several years and reduce the risk that the money went down the drain due to the refusal of the patent offices to grant the patent. The date on which the application was first filed in the world serves as the determining date also for all the countries that will come after it. This date is called in Israel the Kadima date and applications submitted in Israel on the basis of previous applications submitted abroad are called the Kadima plaintiffs’ applications.
The chart published by the Patent Office shows that despite the steady upward trend in recent years in the number of patent applications filed in Israel, in 2019 there was a one-third decrease in the number of patent applications filed in Israel for the first time.
Another interesting statistic that emerges from the report is that out of the 625 applications submitted for the first time in Israel, 30% were examined in an expedited track that allows for the first examination report before the end of the first year. The importance of speeding up the exam stems from the limited schedules regarding submission in the other countries. After one year the inventor has to decide whether he stays with the application in Israel or submits it in other countries. That is, patent applicants used the opinion of the examiners to formulate their filing strategy for the rest of the world.
The effect of the corona plague on patents
Necessity is the father of invention and Newton, which specializes in patent research, notes that inventions keep flowing. “It seems that the whole world is involved in finding solutions to the epidemic,” says Israel, the company’s CEO, “from the private inventor looking for solutions to the uncomfortable mask, through engineering companies looking for solutions of contactless purification or instrumentation technologies to competing research institutes.” To the virus. We check for them whether their invention is new and whether it is worthwhile for them to invest in filing a patent application. Unfortunately, most inventions already exist, so the search phase is critical for them. ”
And what about the future?
The corona plague also brings with it a deep business crisis. The health epidemic is also accompanied by an economic epidemic. Toyota recalls historical crises and knows there is no escape and the slowdown along the way. If you look at the world patent filing chart in the years that include the economic crises of 2000 and 2008, you can clearly see that a year and a half later there is a decline in the number of patents that are published. There is a gap of 18 months from the date of filing of the patent until its publication, so immediately after a year of crisis, we see a slowdown in the number of patents published.
But for fear, under the influence of the information revolution and the entry of the internet into our lives the number of patents filed for registration has been rising consistently since 1995 and even if there is a decline in 2020 very soon we will return at least 3.3 million patent applications worldwide as in 2018.
Links to reports and the source of the graphs: