China's spending on research and development (R&D) increased 17.9 percent year on year to 1.02 trillion yuan (162.24 billion U.S. dollars), according to data released Friday.
The rise comes amid the country's efforts to build an innovation-driven economy.
R&D expenditure represents 1.97 percent of the gross domestic product (GDP) last year, up from the 1.84 percent and 1.75 percent registered in 2011 and 2010, respectively, the National Bureau of Statistics (NBS) said.
China's annual R&D spending grew on average by more than 20 percent for six straight years since 2006 before slowing slightly last year, said a report issued earlier by the NBS.
In 2012, a total of 217,105 invention patents to domestic and overseas applicants were authorized, up 26.1 percent from the previous year, the State Intellectual Property Office said Thursday.
Of the total invention patents, 63.2 percent were granted to domestic applicants.