World Intellectual Property Organization


July-August 2016 | No. 07-08/2016


PCT Statistics 2015

The PCT Yearly Review, 2016 edition

The 2016 edition of the PCT Yearly Review summarizes PCT activities and developments in 2015, and contains a comprehensive set of statistics relating to PCT filings (including filings by top countries of origin, by top applicants and by technical field) and the performance of the international patent system in 2015, as well as statistics relating to national phase entries in 2014. 

This edition contains a special theme which analyzes the frequency with which applicants choose the PCT route rather than the “Paris route”1.  It takes a close look at the trend in the number of international patent families2, analyzing their growth in absolute terms, their distribution and average size by filing route, at the global level and for the top five countries of origin.  It provides similar information for each of the 35 fields of technology and for the 100 applicants worldwide with the largest numbers of international patent families.

The PCT Yearly Review is available in English, in PDF format, at:

where there is also a link to the data and graphs associated with the Review, which contain:

–  images of all the graphs and tables (including titles, sources and notes); and

–  details of the data behind all graphs and tables.

French and Spanish translations of the Review are under preparation. 


  1. The Paris route enables applicants who have filed an application in one Office of a State party to the Paris Convention to file subsequent applications claiming priority of the earlier application in the Offices of other States which are party to the Paris Convention.
  2. Patent families are a set of interrelated patent applications which are filed in one or more Offices, so as to protect the same invention.  International patent families are those for which the patent applicants have filed at least one application in an Office other than the Office in which the earlier filing took place.


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