Recently, we have conducted an empirical analysis of the contribution of patents to the total economic growth based on the classic Cobb-Douglas production function model.

Research findings show that compared with material capital, patent contribution to economic growth is relatively small and there is still great potential and room for improvement. From 1988 to 1993, the average contribution rate of patent stock to economic growth was 31.36% on average while that was 17.65% from 2000 to 2007. The year 2008 witnessed a new round of rapid increase of patent volume when the State Council enacted the Outline of the National Intellectual Property Rights Strategy. From 2008 to 2013, the contribution rate of patent to economic growth reached 29.51%, which means China’s economic growth experienced a change of development pace, a change of economic growth model that was once driven by the increase of material capital as well as an increase of quality of economic growth.

Suggestions on improving contribution rate of patent to economic growth are made as follows. 1. The government needs to steadily promote the strategy of invigorating China by intellectual property rights (IPR) to ensure high-quality economic growth. 2. According to the demand of enterprises at different development phases and in light of the different technical level and industrial features of various sectors and in different areas, the government needs to ensure corporate R&D returns and avoid monopoly resulting from over-protection. The government needs to attract multinational companies to generate knowledge spillover effect and encourage patent information disclosure for R&D and innovation progress while taking proper measures for the protection of patent information. 3. The government needs to enhance the speed and efficiency of patent auditing work and encourage enterprises to make innovations and seize market opportunities for development. 4. The government needs to create an IPR system-based environment favorable for collaboration between enterprises, academia and research institutes and effectively reduce risks popped up in the course of cooperation through contract management and the construction of social environment.

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