WIPO’s PCT publishes 3 millionth international patent application

The World Intellectual Property Organization (WIPO) In February 2017, published the 3 millionth international application under its Patent Cooperation Treaty (PCT). This remarkable result  in the history of the international patent system and WIPO is clear indication that, in spite a great deal of economic uncertainty, the global knowledge economy is constantly growing.


The PCT System has become operational in 1978 and since than has achieved remarkable growth. It took 26 years from the start of operation  to reach one million international applications in late 2004, but only less than 12 years were needed to be reached the milestone of three millions patent applications.

Apart from a  2009 – the only year in which filings fell – PCT use has grown every year. In 2015, a record 218,000 international applications were filed under the PCT system, with provisional figures for 2016 showing that it was also a year of a strong growth.

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