The payments posted a 5.5 percent growth from the previous year, according to the central bank. But royalties paid to local information technology firms remained at $3.24 billion during that period, bringing the overall balance to a deficit of $4.45 billion, according to data.
Citing the growing burden on royalty expenses, BOK economists said that Korean tech firms ― which engaged in a series of legal litigations regarding intellectual property rights ― and other business entities need to make stronger effort to create their original technologies.
Samsung Electronics, LG Electronics and SK Hynix are some of the big-name information technology firms that underwent large-scale lawsuits with global non-practicing entities, or “patent trolls,” which are patent owners that feed solely on royalties without actually using the patented technology for production.
By Chung Joo-won (email@example.com)