With the number of young manufacturing workers shrinking and wages rising, China's manufacturing plants are replacing them with automated robots, according to CBC News. The move is a part of China's broader plan to overhaul their economy and bring them up to speed with the wealthy nations.
"Only by successfully transitioning from the current labor-oriented mode to more automated manufacturing will they [manufacturers] be able to survive in the next few years," said Jan Zhang, an automation expert at IHS Technology in Shanghai.
As more of the younger Chinese population graduate university, more of them are unwilling to do repetitive labor, according to U.S. News & World Report.
"Frontline workers, their turnover rate is really high. More and people are unwilling to do repetitive jobs. So these two issues put the manufacturing industry in China under huge pressure," said Pboll Deng, deputy general manager of Shenzhen Rapoo Technology Co., one of the companies at the forefront of the robotics push. "What we are doing here is a revolution."
The move towards the use of automated robots is not surprising - the Chinese government has been planning to do so to maintain factory expansion without causing a drop in employment rates, according to ValueWalk.
The increased use of robots will also allow China to get its foot into markets where accuracy and precision is needed, including medical devices and aerospace.