Filings are a preliminary patent application activity indicating the potential interest of innovating businesses from all over the world in the European technology market. In 2016, European patent filings grew again (+6.2%), reaching a new high of more than 296 000.
The share of international filings under the Patent Cooperation Treaty (PCT) has increased over the past five years. In 2016, total filings at the EPO included more than 64 000 direct European filings under the European Patent Convention and around 231 500 international filings under the PCT.
Around a third of the total filings in 2016 came from the EPO member states and two-thirds from outside Europe. The top five countries were again the US, Japan, China, Germany, and South Korea.Analysis based on the European patent filings (Direct European filings under the EPC and international filings under the PCT).