023331 gipc ip index 2018 opt


February 08, 2018


The U.S. Chamber of Commerce’s Global Innovation Policy Center is working around the world to champion innovation and creativity through intellectual property standards that create jobs, save lives, advance global economic and cultural prosperity, and generate breakthrough solutions to global challenges. The U.S. Chamber’s 2018 International IP Index, with its 40 discrete indicators covering policy, law, regulation, and enforcement, seeks to answer one simple question: Does a given economy’s intellectual property system provide a reliable basis for investment in the innovation and creativity lifecycle? Because with a strong intellectual property system, there’s no limit to what we might create next.

The sixth edition of the U.S. Chamber International IP Index “Create” is a blueprint for countries seeking to become true knowledge-based economies through an effective IP architecture. Every individual economy represents a blank canvas, with policymakers using broad strokes in the form of IP policy to paint their country’s innovative and creative futures.

Top Performing Countries

  • United States
  • United Kingdom
  • Sweden
  • France
  • Germany

The Index benchmarks economies using 40 indicators in eight categories. New indicators in the areas of commercialization and systemic efficiency provide a more complete, bottom-to-top picture of the investments countries are making in support of domestic innovation and creativity.

The 2018 Index includes five new economies – Costa Rica, Ireland, Jordan, Morocco, and the Netherlands – bringing the total number of economies benchmarked to 50.

Download the full report

Download the executive summary

Download the annex

Positive Developments

Recognizing the benefits that robust IP systems provide, the majority of economies benchmarked in the Index took steps to strengthen their IP framework. Significant, positive developments include:

  • The U.S., UK, and EU economies remain atop the global IP rankings. The U.S. and the UK rank so closely together in the 2018 Index that it has become clear the countries stand side-by-side as global leaders in IP protection and enforcement.
  • Throughout 2017, courts utilized recent legislative changes to bolster protection for copyrighted content online.
  • The majority of the economies benchmarked in the Index are building more effective foundations for IP policy.
  • A number of countries introduced policies to enable innovators and creators to utilize IP as an economic and commercial asset and encourage legitimate technology transfer.


In some countries, the results were mixed; with significant steps forward in some areas and steps back in others. Challenges include:

  • While the U.S. remains at the top of the 2018 Index rankings, innovators and creators face a challenging environment for protecting their patents under current U.S. law.
  • Throughout 2017, obstacles to securing effective patent protection for innovative products emerged in a number of key global markets, including the EU, Australia, and Saudi Arabia, which undermines the fair value of innovative biopharmaceutical products.
  • South Africa published a draft IP policy that includes proposals to weaken patent protection, expand the use of compulsory licensing, and replicate the recommendations of the United Nations High Level Panel on Access to Medicines Report.
  • In Canada, the government’s suspension of many of the IP provisions in the Comprehensive and Progressive Agreement for Trans-Pacific Partnership (CPTPP) calls into question the government’s commitment to embracing more effective IP policies.

023331 gipc ip index 2018 opt