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Published: 11:20, September 30, 2022 | Updated: 18:49, September 30, 2022
WIPO: China on threshold of top 10 most innovative economies
By Xinhua
Published:11:20, September 30, 2022 Updated:18:49, September 30, 2022 By Xinhua

A girl looks at a surgery robot during an expo of the World Robot Conference 2022 in Beijing, capital of China, Aug 18, 2022. (REN CHAO / XINHUA)

GENEVA/BEIJING - China has moved up to 11th place in the 2022 Global Innovation Index (GII) and firmly remains the only middle-income economy in the top 30, according to the latest ranking published by the World Intellectual Property Organization (WIPO) on Thursday.

On the same day, Chinese Premier Li Keqiang sent a congratulatory letter to WIPO on the launch of the Global Innovation Index 2022.

The GII, an annual ranking of the world's economies on innovation capacity and output, shows that Switzerland remains the world leader in innovation for the 12th consecutive year, followed by the US, Sweden, the United Kingdom (UK) and the Netherlands.

China, having ranked 14th and 12th in 2020 and 2021, respectively, steadily rose to the 11th place in 2022, and is now on the doorstep of the world's top 10 most innovative economies

China, having ranked 14th and 12th in 2020 and 2021, respectively, steadily rose to the 11th place in 2022, and is now on the doorstep of the world's top 10 most innovative economies.

"China's growth (in GII ranking) from 34th ten years ago to 11th (in 2022) ... is really spectacular. The close attention paid by the government and the country to innovation as an engine of growth is paying off," WIPO Director General Daren Tang said at the press launch of GII 2022.

"The Chinese government takes IP (intellectual property) very seriously. They have five-year strategic plans in which they are able to harmonize IP policy making with all the related elements. China nurtures its innovation ecosystem in a holistic, comprehensive manner," he said.

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The GII also shows that research and development (R&D) and other investments that drive innovative activities worldwide continued to boom in 2021 despite the COVID-19 pandemic. The top global corporate R&D spenders increased their expenditure by almost ten percent to over US$900 billion in 2021, higher than in pre-pandemic year 2019.

The increase was primarily driven by four industries: information and communication technology (ICT) hardware and electrical equipment; software and ICT services; pharmaceuticals and biotechnology; and construction and industrial metals.

Investments in global R&D in 2020 grew at a rate of 3.3 percent but slowed from the historically high 6.1 percent recorded in 2019. Government budget allocations for the top R&D spending economies showed strong growth in 2020. For 2021, however, the picture was more varied, with spending growing in South Korea and Germany but falling in the US and Japan.

The WIPO chief said that innovation is at a crossroads as the world emerges from the COVID-19 pandemic.

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In his letter, Li said that sci-tech innovation is a powerful driving force for the development of human society. Attaching great importance to innovation, China has vigorously integrated into the global innovation network, protected intellectual property rights (IPRs), and strengthened global cooperation in sci-tech innovation on all fronts, he said.

sci-tech innovation is a powerful driving force for the development of human society. Attaching great importance to innovation, China has vigorously integrated into the global innovation network, protected intellectual property rights (IPRs), and strengthened global cooperation in sci-tech innovation on all fronts, he said.


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