The combined investments of South Korea’s information and communication technology (ICT) companies came to US$22.17 billion (23.98 trillion won) last year, ranking fourth in the world.
According to “1000 Global ICT R&D Investor Scoreboard” published by the Institute for Information & communications Technology Promotion (IITP) on November 29, the combined investments of Korea’s top 1,000 companies stood at US$302.6 billion (327.23 trillion won) last year, up 3.2 percent from US$239.17 billion (258.69 trillion won) a year earlier. The 1,000 leading companies continued to increase their R&D investments, though the market became sluggish.
The United States came in first in terms of ICT R&D investment with US$148.7 billion (161.24 trillion won), followed by Japan with US$37.5 billion (40.66 trillion won) and China with US$34.2 billion (37.1 trillion won).
South Korea ranked fourth after China. However, Samsung Electronics accounted for 57.3 percent of the nation’s total investments of US$22.17 billion (24.04 trillion won). Without Samsung Electronics’ investments, the nation’s investments are US$5.6 billion (6.07 trillion) lower than US$15.1 billion (16.37 trillion won) of Taiwan.
Out of Korea’s total investments of US$22.17 billion (24.04 trillion won), the ICT manufacturing sector took up 97 percent. The figure grew from 95 percent in 2011. Taiwan’s investment proportion in the ICT sector also increased from 98 percent to 99 percent over the same period. On the other hand, the U.S. and China spent more on the software and IT service sectors during the same period. The U.S. boosted its investment proportion in the software and IT service sectors from 43 percent to 50 percent and China from 19 percent to 29 percent.
Three hundred sixty two American companies made the global top 1,000. Their combined investments reached US$148.7 billion (161.32 trillion won), accounting for 49.1 percent of the total investments around the world. Only 34 South Korean companies made the top 1,000, taking fifth place after China, Japan and Taiwan.
China had the highest increase in both the amount of investment and the number of companies. China, which spent only US$20.6 billion (22.33 trillion won) in 2011, increased its R&D investments 66 percent to US$34.2 billion (37.07 trillion won) last year. Its number of companies also grew 94 to 190 over the same period. China’s Huawei came in fifth among the world’s top 1,000 companies, Alibaba 23rd, Tencent 28th, and Baidu 38th.
For the U.S., six firms – Google, Intel, Microsoft, Cisco, Oracle and IBM – made the global top 10 list for five years in a row. Apple and Facebook joined the list during the period.
Samsung Electronics is the only South Korean company that ranked among the top 10 from 2012 to 2014. However, the company handed over its position to Google and Intel for a second successive year and ranked 17th last year.
Meanwhile, the 1000 Global ICT R&D Investor Scoreboard was published to check South Korea’s ICT competitiveness by analyzing corporate R&D investments taking up nearly 71 percent of the nation’s R&D investments.