China Patent Imports Hit US $35.8 Billion in 2018, up 24.7%

May 30, 2019

Recently, the State Administration of Foreign Exchange of P.R. China (SAFE) released the balance of payments data of 2018. It’s reported that China’s IP import reached 236 billion yuan (US$35.8 billion), up 24.74%, which is the highest year-on-year growth rate in the past decade. In addition, China’s patent exports amounted to 36.8 billion yuan (US$5.6 billion), up 16.67%. The trade deficit was $30.2 billion, up 26%.


The balance of payments has included the import and export of IP royalty since 1997, which increased by an average of 22% annually. At present, China has become the 4th largest patent importer in the world. According to the International Monetary Fund, in the first three quarters of 2018, China ranked 3rd with $27.7 billion in patent royalty imports; and, according to SAFE, China's patent royalty exports is ranked 11th in the world.