China leads post-pandemic robot recovery
Preliminary data from the International Federation of Robotics (IFR) shows that sales in China increased 19% in 2020.
“The outlook for the robotics industry is optimistic,” says Milton Guerry, President of the International Federation of Robotics. “In China, where the coronavirus lockdown came into force first, the robotics industry started to recover already in 2020. In total 167,000 industrial robots were shipped.” Market growth in China also has a strong positive impact on foreign suppliers – up 24% or 123,000 industrial robots were shipped from abroad. Japanese suppliers have a dominant market share. Domestic suppliers delivered 44,000 units to their home market which is an increase of 8% compared to 2019. Worldwide, North America and Europe Global robot installations in 2020 were down 2%, particularly under the impact of the Coronavirus pandemic. Still the decline in sales was more moderate than expected, IFR reports. The order intakes of the robotics industry 2021 give reason to expect strong growth in North America and Europe. Order books in the US for example are filling up fast. In Germany, the forecast for the current year shows a strong recovery and signifies a positive turning point for the industry. Even better sales figures will be achievable if the current supply bottlenecks for key components can be quickly overcome.