By Chris Devonshire-Ellis
Oct. 23 – China has been granted a total of 67,948 patents against India’s 7,539 according to the World Intellectual Property Organization (WIPO).
China also filed more applications than India, a total of 245,161 against 28,940. The statistics illustrate the rapid development China has been making in terms of its intellectual capabilities and desire to move the country onto the next level of development. A China moving up the value chain, conducting R&D and being inventive is now a reality. It follows the same path taken by Japan thirty years ago, when it too, moved away from cheap production and copying others, to a truly innovative society.
The statistics do cover up India’s true capabilities however. The nation has suffered an extensive brain drain over the past thirty years, denuding it of talent, much of which has ended up in the form of U.S.-owned intellectual patent. That said, India does need to instigate a far more robust program of inventiveness, originality and design than it currently is capable to compete.
India’s path ahead is also clear; while it will inherit much of China’s increasingly discarded cheap manufacturing base, it must also plan ahead and move up the value chain. While China is often blamed for cheap copies, the reality of the situation is far different. It is China that is now the new power in terms of innovation and imagination, and India the one lagging far behind.