Manufacturing News

Nation's 'metal city' sees prosperous future in industrial robotics

More than 35 million vacuum bottles were produced last year by Haers Vacuum Containers Co Ltd in Yongkang, the second largest output of its kind worldwide. "A robot assembly line will be launched soon, and we are confident of surpassing the current leading producer this year," said Wang Shuyi, supply chain general manager of the company in Zhejiang province.

In line with the "Made in China 2025" strategy, which aims to upgrade the country's manufacturing sector, the government and businesses in Yongkang, a city in eastern China's Zhejiang province, have found new ways to enhance productivity and product quality while bringing down labor costs.

"The government had given around 40 million yuan ($6.3 million) of allowances to businesses that use advanced equipment such as industrial robots in 2017," said Ying Xujun, vice-head of Yongkang economy and information technology bureau.

As the "City of Metal," Yongkang now has more than 10,000 businesses in the hardware business, involving electric tools, kitchenware and thermal cups, becoming China's largest base for manufacturing, trading and exporting of hardware products.

"There are more than 360 ongoing programs aiming at using industrial robots to set up zero-labor production lines, with total investment reaching more than 8.5 billion yuan," Ying said.

The robotics industry has been listed as a key development area in the national "Made in China 2025" strategy, as the country is the biggest market for industrial robots worldwide.

The output of China's industrial robots exceeded 100,000 in the first 10 months of 2017, up 70-percent year-on-year, according to the Ministry of Industry and Information Technology.

China is the biggest market for industrial robots in the world, accounting for about one-third of global demand.

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