Impact of IPR on the European Economy: Summary of OHIM’s Report

Brief summary of the report on “Intellectual property rights intensive industries:  contribution to economic performance and employment  in the European Union” published September 2013 by  Office for Harmonization in the Internal Market (OHIM).

European Union Impact of IPR

On 30th September European commission has published first ever European Union wide study on the impact of IPR on the European economy in the term of GDP, Employment, Wages and Trade. The key findings of the report are:

1. 40% of total economic activity in the EU (about 4.7 trillion Euros or 6.4 trillion US dollars annually) is generated by IPR-intensive industries.

2. 26% of all jobs (56 million) in the EU are generated by IPR‑intensive industries in 2008-2010 with the split as given below. This is referred as Direct employment in table 1:

2.1 21% by trade mark‑intensive industries
2.2 12% by design‑intensive
2.3 10% by patent‑intensive industries
2.4 Lesser in copyright‑intensive and GI‑intensive industries

3. 35% (1 in 3) of the jobs (direct and indirect) in Europe (76 million jobs) stems from industries that has a higher than average use of IP rights. This number will result if we add another 20 million jobs in the EU economy which are generated in non‑IPR intensive industries that supply goods and services to IPR intensive industries.

4. The average wages of IPR intensive industries is more than 40% higher that of other industries.

Table 1. Direct and indirect contribution of IPR-intensive industries to employment (Source: EPO)

IPR-intensive industries Employment
Share of total employment
Trade mark‑intensive 45,508,046 17,600,397 63,108,443
Design‑intensive 26,657,617 12,121,817 38,779,434
Patent‑intensive 22,446,133 12,738,237 3,584,370
Copyright‑intensive 7,049,405 2,331,390 9,380,795
GI‑intensive N/A N/A 374,345
All IPR intensive 56,493,661 20,109,003 2,019,003


Table 2. Contribution of IPR-intensive industries to GDP

IPR-intensive industries Value Added (GDP)
(€ million)
Share of total
Trade mark‑intensive 4,163,527 33.90%
Design‑intensive 1,569,565 12.80%
Patent‑intensive 1,704,485 13.90%
Copyright‑intensive 509,859 4.20%
GI‑intensive 16,134 0.10%
All IPR intensive 4,735,262 38.60%


Table 3. The 20 most patent-intensive industries (Source: EPO)





Manufacture of power‑driven hand tools

Leasing of intellectual property and similar products, except copyrighted works


Leasing of intellectual property and similar products, except copyrighted works

Manufacture of basic pharmaceutical products


Manufacture of basic pharmaceutical products

Manufacture of wine from grape


Manufacture of other chemical products

Research and experimental development on biotechnology


Research and experimental development on biotechnology

Manufacture of perfumes and toilet preparations


Manufacture of optical instruments and photographic equipment

Manufacture of irradiation, electromedical and electrotherapeutic equipment


Manufacture of instruments and appliances for measuring, testing and navigation

Manufacture of other transport equipment


Manufacture of electric domestic appliances

Manufacture of games and toys


Manufacture of machinery for metallurgy

Manufacture of sports goods


Manufacture of irradiation, electromedical and electrotherapeutic equipment

Other telecommunications activities


Manufacture of machinery for textile, apparel and leather production

Publishing of computer games


Other research and experimental development on natural sciences and engineering

Distilling, rectifying and blending of spirits


Other non‑ferrous metal production

Motion picture, video and television programme distribution activities


Manufacture of communication equipment

Web portals


Manufacture of electronic components

Manufacture of wallpaper


Extraction of natural gas

Other non‑ferrous metal production


Manufacture of other transport equipment

Other manufacturing


Manufacture of industrial gases

Manufacture of macaroni, noodles, couscous and similar farinaceous products


Manufacture of machinery for paper and paperboard production

Printing of newspapers


Manufacture of military fighting vehicles

Sound recording and music publishing activities

Michel Barnier, Internal Market and Services Commissioner said: “I am convinced that intellectual property rights play a hugely important role in stimulating innovation and creativity, and I welcome the publication of this study. It will help us to further underpin our evidence-based policy making. What this study shows us is that the use of intellectual property rights in the economy is ubiquitous: from high-tech industries to manufacturers of sports goods, games, toys and computer games, all are making intensive use of not just one, but often several types of IP rights.”

Click here to download complete report from EPO.


Related Posts

Canada and European Union (EU) agree on CETA (Comprehensive Economic and trade Agreement)

In order to bring intellectual property protection at Canada more closely to the...

Harit Mohan at NITTTR Industry Academia Integration
Industry Academia Integration on IPR & Tech Transfer

Industry Academia Integration is a key requisite for sustainable growth of institutes &...