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Every additional 10 million dollars (PPP) spent on research and development result in 2 patent applications per annum in average. The implication is based on the statistics on gross domestic R&D expenditures and number of patent applications to the EPO (European Patent Office) among European countries. Strong positive correlation between these two indicators shows that the more you spend on research and development the more considerable result you get. Thus, Germany, France, UK and Italy are leading countries both by R&D spending and number of patent applications. Moreover, it is significant both current R&D expenditures and expenditures incurred in the past providing evidence that R&D expenditures have lagged effect. Although patent applications statistics cannot be regarded as a perfect proxy of the country's knowledge power (as patent application itself may turn out to be unsuccessful) it, in some measure, is positively related with the wealth of a country.

Sources: UNESCO Institute for Statistics data, 2013Patent applications to the EPO by priority year and NUTS 3 regions, March 2013

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