Hsinchu Science-based park firms top list of patent owners

Alfred Lee, The China Post

With the exception of the Industrial Technology Research Institute (ITRI), nine of Taiwan’s top-10 patent owners are all located in the Hsinchu Science-based Industrial Park (HSIP), according to an announcement of the Ministry of Economic Affairs (MOEA).

The nine HSIP-located companies gained a total of 2,737 patent rights last year. The MOEA also pointed out that the research and development expenditure (R&D) of the top 10 patent owners accounted for 5.94 percent of their overall expenses, much higher than the 1.5 percent R&D expenditures spent by the manufacturing industry. The total R&D spending of all enterprises in the HSIP topped NT$38.5 billion, the MOEA-compiled statistics indicated.

The top HSIP patent owners of the last two years are Taiwan Semiconductor Manufacturing Co., Ltd., United Microelectronics Corp., Hon Hai Precision Industry, and the Industrial Technology Research Institute, with each getting more than 400 patents a year. The MOEA said these companies had performed as good models for other local enterprises.

The manufacturing industry in Taiwan has been undergoing a structural change in recent years, the ministry said. The percentage of technology-intensive industries has grown from 23.9 percent in 1986 to 40 percent last year. Exports of electronic and information products accounted for 38 percent of the total export value of the country last year. The figures indicate an enhanced R&D capability in Taiwan. The R&D results were reflected on the numbers of patents acquired by local companies. The top three patent creators in Taiwan are from the semiconductor, optical communications, and information technology industries.

The MOEA indicated that the government had projected a plan to boost the national R&D expense to 3 percent of the GDP with 30 percent set aside by the government and 70 percent from the private sector.