China’s robot industry recorded revenue of more than 170 billion yuan (US$24 billion) in 2022, a senior official said at a recent conference.
At the 2023 “Robot+” conference held last week in the southern manufacturing hub Dongguan, Wang Hong said the country produced 443,000 industrial robots and 6.458 million service robots last year.
Wang is deputy director of the first equipment industry division at the Ministry of Industry and Information Technology (MIIT).
Industrial robot installations in China accounted for more than 50% of the world total in 2022 and has ranked at the top for nine consecutive years.
The global industrial robot market is experiencing a second period of exponential growth, with the market expanding at a CAGR of 12% over the past 10 years, said Chen Dan, deputy secretary-general of the robot chapter of China Machinery Industry Federation.
Chen also explained that China’s industrial robot sector expanded by 28% last year, more than twice as fast as the industrial average globally.
In 2021, China’s robot density in its manufacturing sector, an indicator of automation levels, reached 322 units per 10,000 employees.
This number helped China advance 20 notches to rank 5th in 2021 from 25th in 2015, surpassing the United States yet still lagging far behind countries like South Korea and Singapore.
“There is immense room for improvement (in this regard),” Chen said.
Wang of MIIT was upbeat about China’s prospects in the robotic space. He said sustained innovations in Chinese robotics, together with accelerated breakthroughs in core components such as high-precision reducer and smart controllers, have consistently boosted productivity.
As such, the country has made tremendous inroads in signature products including space robot, deep-ocean robot and healthcare robot.
According to public information, China’s industrial robotics now span 60 categories and 168 sub-categories of the national economy.
Apart from industrial robots, service robots have engendered new business forms, models and patterns, during their innovative application in logistics, education, entertainment, healthcare and wellness.