• World Biz Magazine

GERMANY IS THE PATENT POWERHOUSE OF THE EUROPE UNION, BETS BIG ON HEATING



"There are a number of factors why Germany is so far ahead in intellectual property rights filings. One is the strength of German industry in general. Another is Germany's unique R&D landscape with its four massive extra-university research institutions, the Fraunhofer and Max Planck Societies, and the Leibniz and Helmholtz Associations." - Robert Hermann, CEO of Germany Trade & Invest.

A study by the European Patent Office (EPO) has confirmed that the EU's largest economy leads the way in patents, trademarks and designs.


Data from the European Patent Office highlights Germany's dominance in practical industrial innovation within the European Union.


In a survey of intellectual property rights filings by country of origin in all industries, the EPO identified 67,163 patents, trademarks and designs from Germany. By comparison, the corresponding figure for France was 25,305. German consistently comes in second, behind only the United States, when it comes to EPO filings.


One particular German strength is climate protection innovation. 41.7 percent of all patents granted to EU companies went to German firms. Germany also accounted for 30 percent of all green EU trademarks between 2015 and 2021. That's almost three times as many as the second-ranked country, France, the survey found.


"There are a number of factors why Germany is so far ahead in intellectual property rights filings," says Robert Hermann, CEO of Germany Trade & Invest. "One is the strength of German industry in general. Another is Germany's unique R&D landscape with its four massive extra-university research institutions, the Fraunhofer and Max Planck Societies, and the Leibniz and Helmholtz Associations."


"Germany has traditionally been a pioneer of environmental and climate protection innovations," Hermann added. "And this tradition has only been strengthened by the orientation of the current government."



Germany Invests Big to Accelerate Heating Revolution

Heat pumps are all the rage in Germany – and now the government is offering millions in research grants for projects aimed at decarbonizing heating and cooling.


"Heating and cooling accounts for more than half of the energy consumed in Germany, and the government is throwing its weight behind key technologies like heating pumps. That's only going to accelerate what's already a record-setting boom in this sector. This is a major opportunity for international companies on the ground in Germany." - Robert Hermann, CEO of Germany Grade & Invest.

(GTAI) – Germany's Ministry for Economic Affairs and Climate Action has issued a call for proposals for research and pilot projects to accelerate the transition to heat pumps and other climate-neutral forms of heating and cooling.


There is no fixed amount for the program, which runs until February 28, 2023, but it will be funded from its annual EUR 600 million budget for energy research. Focuses will include heat pump production, climate-friendly coolants and construction materials, and district heating, industrial-scale heat pumps, seasonal heat storage and new control concepts.


"By supporting heating research, we are investing today in the energy system of tomorrow," said Minister for Economic Affairs and Climate Action Robert Habeck. "I invite all creative minds from research and industry to contribute their know-how, ideas and efforts."


The initiative comes at an exciting time for heat pumps in Germany. On October 10, the Fraunhofer Institute of Solar Energy Systems ISE announced that it had set a new record for efficiency in heat pump refrigeration cycles using propane. The German government hopes augmented state support will lead to more such technological breakthroughs.


The potential for heat pumps in home heating in the most populous member state of the EU is immense. The independent energy research institution FfE Munich estimates that heat pumps could be used in some 17 million of the 19 million German residential buildings.


Consumers are enthusiastic. Sales of heat pumps in Germany increased by 28 percent year-on-year in 2022 according to industry organization bwp, and expected growth in 2022 far exceeds that. All the major manufacturers of heat pumps in Germany have announced expansions – the latest being Daikin, which says it is tripling capacity at its plant in the town of Güglingen.


"Heating and cooling accounts for more than half of the energy consumed in Germany, and the government is throwing its weight behind key technologies like heating pumps," says Robert Hermann, CEO of Germany Grade & Invest. "That's only going to accelerate what's already a record-setting boom in this sector. This is a major opportunity for international companies on the ground in Germany."


 

Germany Trade & Invest (GTAI) is the economic promotion agency of the Federal Republic of Germany. GTAI supports German companies setting up in foreign markets, promotes Germany as a business location and assists foreign companies setting up shop in Germany.


For more information, visit: gtai.com