The growth of robotics in China highlights rapid change throughout Asia

ABB Robotics 8th annual Asian Value Provider Conference holds some key insights into where the region is headed from an automation perspective.

For the past 8 years ABB Robotics has held its annual Asian Value Provider Conference in China. It is an event that celebrates our close relationships with our partners and customers, allowing us to learn from each other and provide detailed information on all of our newest products and robotic automation solutions.

But paying special attention to this rapidly developing region, including the many other countries in Asia Pacific, is nothing new to ABB. In fact, we were the first major robotics company to build a presence in China more than 20 years ago and establish a manufacturing base here. Now, 21 years later, China is the fastest developing market for industrial robotics on the planet and ABB is a robotics market leader in the region.

This week our 8th annual Asian Value Provider Conference marks another first for ABB Robotics: it is the first time the event has been held outside of Shanghai or Beijing, in the city of Chongqing. With a population of around 29 million people, Chongqing is one of the largest cities on the planet. It is also one of the largest manufacturing hubs in the world, so it makes sense that robotics uptake in this region has been very important to ABB Robotics.

Holding the conference in the western part of China is a clear statement that the dynamics of manifacturing in Asia are changing quickly, and highlights how it is important for ABB to get closer to more customers throughout all of China and the rest of Asia.

“This conference is a good platform for all of our partners in Asia to network with one another and with ABB,” said James Li, Head of ABB Robotics China, during his opening remarks to some 700 attendees. “You are all pioneers in this market and your success is our success.”

This year the ABB Robotics Asian Value Provider Conference is co-located with ABB Automation World China, allowing attendees to also visit ABB’s largest automation trade fair in the region, with dozens of robotic demos ranging from collaborative human-robot small parts assembly with YuMi–the world’s first truly collaborative dual-arm robot–to palletizing, high speed picking and placing, arc welding and automotive Body-in-White assembly. In addition, ABB’s entire automation portfolio including motors and drives will be on display so that customers and partners can get a comprehensive overview of our offering.

“In the past several years we have seen rapid development in robotic technologies all around the world,” said Per Vegard Nerseth, Managing Director of ABB Robotics during a presentation at the event. “It is not only ABB that has changed, the whole world is experiencing rapid change in many categories, and ABB has been a very strong contributor to these developments. We were the first to introduce an all-electric, microprocessor controlled industrial robot in 1974, and we have had many firsts since then.”

“Looking into the future we don’t see the demand for robots decreasing, in fact, we see it only continuing to grow,” he continued. “So I would say the best is yet to come for our industry, and in China and all of Asia, this growth will outpace the growth in the rest of the world.”

Who knows where our Asian Value Provider Conference will take us next year, but given the market outlook for robotics in Asia, it is an exciting time to be creating closer relationships with our partners in the region. Robotics IS the right industry to be in.



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About the author

Sidney Chen

I am the Marketing Communications Manager of ABB Robotics in China. I joined ABB in 2004, working for local Division Marketing Communications function for Automation Technology Division, Automation Products Division, Discrete Automation and Process Automation Division successively before joining Robotics in 2012.
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