The Hyundai Research Institute mentioned in a report that Korea is falling behind China in 13 out of 85 core technology fields. Released on Jan. 11, the report compares the scientific and technological accomplishments of Korea, China, Japan, and Germany based on relative and absolute indices. The relative indices reflect their difference in economic scale.
Korea distinguished itself in most of the relative indices. For example, its ratio of R&D investment to GDP was 4.36 percent as of the end of 2012, followed by Japan (3.35 percent), Germany (2.98 percent), and China (1.98 percent). The number of researchers per 1,000 economically active people was 12.4 while those were 9.9 for Japan, 8.2 for Germany and 1.8 for China.
The number of PCT patent applications per researcher and the number of published scientific treatises per researcher were 0.038 and 0.089, respectively. Korea lagged behind Japan and Germany in these categories.
Korea was at the bottom, however, when it comes to each of the absolute indices. Its R&D investment and number of researchers were US$65.4 billion and 316,000, whereas China recorded US$293.5 billion and 1.404 million. Korea’s patent applications added up to 12,000, equivalent to 25 percent of Japan’s and 60 percent of China’s or Germany’s each. “In summary, Korea recorded 185.4 points in the overall absolute index and China, Japan and Germany posted 565.0, 645.7, and 362.5,” the report read, adding, “Besides, the gap between the two is widening.”