||Global spread of pharmaceutical patent protections: micro evidence from the international equivalents of the drug patents in Japan
OKADA, YoshimiNAGAOKA, Sadao
2016-07 , Institute of Innovation Research, Hitotsubashi University
We investigate the global spread of pharmaceutical patent protections as acquired by firms, based on a novel global patent database for all significant medical drugs introduced in Japan. It gives us the propensity of filing and grant rate for each country for the granted patents in Japan. Major findings are the following. Both the filing propensity to and the grant rate of major Asian countries approached those of the OECD economies by the early 2000s for chemical substance inventions. However, there still exists substantial heterogeneity with respect to the other drug inventions: crystal, use, formulation or combination, suggesting a significant future room for international harmonization of patent granting standard. We found clear evidence for policy impact on the spread of protections for the two largest non-OECD economies. The Patent Law reform in China in 1993 had an immediate and significant impact on patent filing propensity to China (25 percentage points increase) well before it becoming a WTO member in late 2001. Furthermore, the mailbox application system in India had a substantial effect: the filing propensity reached 80 percent of the number of corresponding EP patent applications around year 2000, well before the year of TRIPS implementation for drug patents.