KSA ranks 23rd in number of patents granted by the US Patent and Trademark Office

The King Fahd University of Petroleum & Minerals (KFUPM) campus is shown in this photo from the university's Facebook page. KFUPM ranked seventh among the top 10 universities in the world in terms of the number of patents granted by the United States Patent and Trademark Office in 2017.
Updated 17 April 2018
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KSA ranks 23rd in number of patents granted by the US Patent and Trademark Office

  • The bulk of the patented Saudi inventions are scientific
  • KFUPM and Saudi Aramco hold most of the patents filed by Saudi Arabia

RIYADH: Saudi Arabia has ranked 23rd among 92 countries in terms of patents granted by the United States Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO) in 2017. The vast majority of these patented inventions are scientific.
According to StatNano, which publishes at the beginning of each year a report on the status of nanoscience, technology and innovation in the previous year, Saudi Arabia was granted 664 patents last year, compared to 517 in 2016 and 409 in 2015. What’s more, the latest number is double that of all Arab countries combined during the same period.
This year, King Fahd University of Petroleum & Minerals (KFUPM) ranked seventh among the top 10 universities in the world in terms of the number of patents granted. “The university achieved 183 patents in 2017, surpassing Johns Hopkins University, Harvard College and California Institute of Technology,” said Dr. Khaled bin Saleh Al Sultan, president of the Dhahran-based university.
“The university has been granted more than 800 patents so far, and this number is over 60% of the total number of patents registered by all Arab countries’ universities, which number about 300,” he added.
Together with the university, Saudi Aramco — which was granted 233 new patents in 2017 — secured more than two-thirds of the total number of patents last year. In 2016, Aramco was awarded 175 new patents and filed for 285 new patents.
The latest news about patents comes at a time when Saudi Arabia has put focus on digital transformation and improvement of opportunities in diverse fields — from technology and tourism to arts and entrepreneurship.
Saudi Arabia has, for the first time, also claimed a spot among “Top Ten Countries in Nanotechnology Patents in 2017,” according to a StatNano report last month. The report says “the reason is the growth of 128% in the number of nanotechnology published patent applications of this country in 2017.
The number of nanotechnology published patent applications in USPTO in 2017 shows a growth of 3.2% in comparison with 2016.”
The significant rise in the number of patents is one indicator that Saudi Arabia’s ambitious Vision 2030 plan has already started to bear fruit.

 


Saudi sources deny ‘unsubstantiated’ reports of permitting alcohol

Updated 57 min 26 sec ago
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Saudi sources deny ‘unsubstantiated’ reports of permitting alcohol

  • “The leadership has made it clear from day one; it is simply not happening,”SCTH source tells Arab News
  • The SCTH is responsible for licensing and rating hotels and restaurants

RIYADH: Saudi Arabia has no plans to allow the sale or public consumption of alcohol, a senior government source has told Arab News.

The official with access to relevant decision-makers categorically denied “unsubstantiated” media reports in some international and regional news outlets.

“If you read the fake news, you will notice it is all based on hearsay and tweets by accounts known to have a questionable agenda when talking about the Kingdom,” he said.

“As the country moves forward with its reform plans, we expect much speculation and attempts by critics to hold us back. And while people are allowed to speculate and criticize, their speculation should not be treated as the truth.”

A second source at the Saudi Commission for Tourism and National Heritage (SCTH) also denied such reports. “The leadership has made it clear from day one; it is simply not happening,” he told Arab News. “I have not heard of any plans to allow alcohol in major cities, free zones or new projects.”

The SCTH is responsible for licensing and rating hotels and restaurants. Any plans for the sale or consumption of alcohol would have to go through the commission for implementation. 

Saudi Arabia has witnessed substantial social reforms over the past three years, such as the curbing of the previously unchecked power of the religious police, reopening cinemas and allowing women to drive.

There has also been a major shift on previously prohibited public entertainment and gender mixing. International artists including Mariah Carey, Yanni, Andrea Bocelli, Enrique Iglesias and Black Eyed Peas have all performed.

Tourism projects have included pop-up versions of international restaurants such as Signor Sassi, Nusr-Et and Nobu. None has served alcohol.

“Officials have repeatedly said all changes were and will always be in line with Islamic teachings and traditions,” the senior source told Arab News.