The World Intellectual Property Office (WIPO) recently published the Patent Cooperation Treaty Yearly Review for 2013. According to the report, national and regional patent offices worldwide filed about 205,300 applications in 2013, an increase of 5.1% from 2012. The US and China were two major contributors to the growth, accounting for 56% and 29% of the total growth respectively.

In 2013, the top three receiving offices by filing volume were US Patent & Trademark Office (USPTO, 57,793 applications), Japan Patent Office (JPO, 43,075), and European Patent Office (32,038); whereas the top five countries which received the most applications were the US (57,239 applications), Japan (43,918), China (21,516), Germany (17,927), and Republic of Korea (12,386), with total filings of these countries representing about three-quarters of the PCT applications filed worldwide in the year.

The top business applicant in 2013 was Panasonic Corporation of Japan, with 2,839 published PCT applications, while the other applicants on the top five were ZTE Corporation (2,309 applications) and Huawei Technologies (2,110) of China, and Qualcomm Incorporated (2,050) and Intel Corporation (1,871) of the US.

As regards the field of technology, the top three fields in which the largest number of PCT applications was published in 2013 were electrical machinery (14,897 applications), computer technology (14,684) and digital communications (14,059).

In respect of PCT-Patent Prosecution Highway (PCT-PPH) pilots, there were 6,336 requests for the fast-track patent examination, up 38.4% from 2012. Among them, the USPTO received 3,471 requests, making it the most chosen office of destination, followed by the JPO (1,272) and the State Intellectual Property Office of China (809).