US dominates world patents
Mar 19, 1999
Inventors from the US receive more patents than inventors from any other foreign country in almost half the nations studied in a recent report from the US National Science Foundation. US inventors received most foreign patents in Canada, Mexico, Japan, India and Brazil. German inventors were the most successful foreigners in France, Italy and Russia, while the UK was top in the US and South Korea. Japanese inventors were the most successful foreigners in Germany. However, a separate report from the Council on Competitiveness has warned that "the US's status as the world's pre- eminent innovator nation is in jeopardy unless changes are made in national policy and investment choices."
The National Science Foundation report also discovered that the US, Russia and Japan have the lowest number of patents awarded to foreign inventors. In all the other countries surveyed, over two-thirds of each countries patents went to foreign inventors. One reason for the low number of foreign-held Japanese patents is the high cost of translating international patents ($1.70 per Japanese character).