Chinese companies bought 80 per cent more industrial robots in the period from July to September 2017 than they did in the same period last year.
This is according to the Japan Robot Association, which released a range of statistics which suggest that Chinese manufacturers of smartphones and other electronics products are turning to Japanese companies for their automation requirements.
JRA has yet to release the full report for the period, but Nikkei reports that the association’s members shipped robots valued at a total of $1.72 billion.
This is an increase of almost 40 per cent since last year.
Nikkei adds that the JRA forecasts that total production in Japan – by its members and by companies which are not its members – will increase to approximately $6.6 billion worth of robotics and automation systems.
Total exports of robots from Japan – including but not limited to China – for the period increased by more than 52 per cent to $1.3 billion.
Shipments to China – which, as mentioned, increased 80 per cent – were valued at almost $600 million.
Meanwhile, shipments to the US rose almost 14 per cent to $241 million; to Germany by 47 per cent to $115 million; and Taiwan by another 80 per cent to $45 billion.
It looks like all of the Japanese robot makers are doing well in China, so are the companies from other parts of the world.
One company which seems to be doing particularly well is Yaskawa, which reported an increase in profits of 150 per cent in its most recent accounting period.