Chinese regional governments started to make their forays into robot industry to support the development manufacturing industry and offset surging labor costs. China represents 20 percent of the global manufacturing sector. However, China’s labor cost soared nearly 60 percent in 2012 as compared with 2009, suffering the highest labor cost in Asia and lagging far behind developed countries (source in Chinese).

The annual growth rate of China’s robot industry recorded a chart-topping 40 percent in recent years. The annual output of this sector is expected to reach nearly 300 billion yuan within one decade, while that for the whole industry chain will amount to trillions of yuan (source in Chinese).

Chongqing Institute of Green and Intelligent Technology sealed deals with several robot manufacturers to establish robot projects in the southwestern economic center of Chongqing. The government expected the output from robot industry to reach 50 billion yuan in five years and this reading is expected to amount to 100 billion yuan by 2020, according to Huang Qifan, mayor of the city.

A raft of robot industry parks were established countrywide, including cities of Nanjing, Harbin and Qingdao.

Furthermore, the Ministry of Industry and Information Technology is planning to issue a guide on the future development of robot industry.

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Emma Lee

Emma Lee (Li Xin) was TechNode's e-commerce and new retail reporter until June 2022, when she moved to Sixth Tone to cover technology and consumption. Get in touch with her via lixin@sixthtone.com or Twitter.

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