11 April 2019

We’re pleased to release the seventh edition of the Australian Intellectual Property (IP) Report, now with enhanced data visualisations. The report shows recent trends and changes in IP activity that can inform public discussion on innovation and entrepreneurship both domestically and internationally. The latest statistics reveal that all IP rights applications continued to grow year-on-year, reflecting the contribution the IP system has had to Australia’s economic growth over the past 26 consecutive years.  

Findings indicate Australia’s engagement in the IP system continues to strengthen. Some highlights include:

  • Australian residents recorded strong growth in applications for patents (up nine per cent), design rights (up eight per cent) and plant breeder’s rights (up 13 per cent).
  • New South Wales was the largest source of patent applications compared to other states. It was also the leading state in terms of domestic growth, which is consistent with the concentration of innovation and entrepreneurship hubs based in Sydney.

In 2018, we received 29,957 patent applications. Strong growth came in applications from Australian residents, rising nine per cent since 2017. The US, Japan, Germany and the UK remain the top international countries of origin for patent filings in 2018.

There were 79,490 trade mark applications filed in 2018, up four per cent from 2017. The largest share (58 per cent) came from Australian residents, but the growth was in non-resident filings (11 per cent). 2018 set a new record for designs rights filed in Australia with 7,816 applications received.

In addition to statistics, the report showcases research and analysis undertaken by IP Australia. Studies examine the phenomenon of ‘trade mark cluttering’, a situation that arises if a trade mark register becomes cluttered with out-of-use and overly broad trade marks; and the use of design rights within Australia and how Australia compares to its international peers.

By stimulating public discussion on IP through this report we aim to provide a forum for engagement. In this spirit, we welcome your comments, suggestions and questions.

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