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Japan leads world in robotics

The International Federation of Robotics reports that Japan makes almost half the world’s robots

Japan is the world’s number one industrial robot manufacturer – delivering 45% of the global supply. This is the key finding of a study published by the International Federation of Robotics (IFR) ahead of the International Robot Exhibition (iREX), running in Tokyo until 12 March 2022.

In recent years, the country’s robot suppliers have increased their production capacity considerably: Their export ratio rose to 78% in 2020, when 136,069 industrial robots were shipped.

36% of the Japanese exports of robotics and automation technology were destined for China. Like other international robot suppliers, Japanese manufacturers also serve the Chinese market directly from their factories in China. These factories on the world’s largest market for industrial robots proved to be a major advantage in 2020, when international supply chains were disrupted due to the Covid-19 pandemic. Japanese suppliers were able to benefit comprehensively from the Chinese post-crisis boom that started in the second quarter of 2020 and gained momentum in the second half of the year.

With a market share of 22%, the United States is the other top market for Japanese exports of robotics and automation technology. Both countries – the US and China – are expected to further rebound from the Covid-19 pandemic. Together with the domestic market, the major export destinations will secure demand for Japanese robotics.

“This year’s iREX exhibition in Tokyo will focus on ways towards a friendlier society, bridged by robots. iREX will display how robots are increasingly shaping our daily lives,” says Dr Susanne Bieller, general secretary of the International Federation of Robotics.

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