You are here: Home > News > At last the true value of Intellectual Property to the European economy has been quantified

At last the true value of Intellectual Property to the European economy has been quantified

4 October 2013

The contribution made by IP-led industries to the European economy has been quantified for the first time in a report published by the European Patent Office (EPO) and the Office for Harmonisation in the Internal Market (OHIM).

The report has revealed that industries described as ‘IPR-intensive’ – those that file a high number of Community Trade Marks, Registered Design Rights and patents – are responsible for about 39% of the European Union’s total economic activity (GDP), worth 4.7 trillion Euro each year.

Karl Barnfather, chairman at Withers & Rogers, says:

“This is an important study that has confirmed for the first time the massive contribution that IP-led businesses make to the European economy.

“We fully expect that the findings of the report will help counter some of the negativity surrounding intellectual property, particularly in some industries, where the commercial opportunity to create wealth from inventions is being missed.

“Recognised as a top 10 ‘IPR-intensive’ industry in terms of its contribution to European GDP, computer programming is just one example of an industry where we have significant talent here in the UK. We could be making more of this in terms of creating wealth and jobs if only IP rights were fully respected throughout the sector and moreover a better understanding could be achieved of how much software can be patented.

“The report shows the significance for employment in the EU around IP-related industries. The study found that 26% of jobs in the EU were in IP-intensive industries with those roles attracting 41% higher pay compared to the same job outside the IP-intensive industry.”

The results also compare very favourably with a US study published last year which showed that in 2010 a total of about 35% of the US economy was attributed to IP-intensive industries, generating $5 trillion for the US economy.

“Clearly, Europe is fully engaged in the “knowledge economy” adding value through creativity and entrepreneurialism to generate hugely important wealth,” concludes Karl Barnfather.

The full report can be found here.