China is the world's biggest robotics market. Swiss robotics giant ABB Group is spreading out its China strategy through more localization solutions, according to its CEO Ulrich Spiesshofer.
It's no surprise that robotics companies are doubling down on their China strategy. After decades of fast development, ABB has a full range of business activities in China. In 2017, China continued as ABB's second-largest market worldwide, with over 90 percent of sales from locally-made products, solutions and services.
“We have local management team and we have local R&D. More than 12 percent of our people in China are working in R&D. We have fully integrated our value chain and we are close to our customers here,” he said.
ABB is building what it calls the world's most advanced robotics factory in Shanghai. The CEO added that “the old approach was global R&D and local manufacturing. Now we got the right products, right team and right value chain for the local market.”
Despite China's slowing economic growth, Spiesshofer is still confident that robotization and automation will help the country to have “higher quality output.” And he projected China to be the fastest in adopting electric mobility.
“The country has clear strategy. I would expect that China is one of the countries in the world to adopt in the fastest speed regarding electric mobility,” he told CGTN.
Meanwhile, Spiesshofer bet on digitalization, automation and artificial intelligence will accelerate China's development in the future.
“China has been ramping up the adoption rate of automation. If you go to the next phase, where digitalization and automation and artificial intelligence will be a key role, China will take a leading role in AI and have a very strong proposition there. The universities are strongly established. Companies are working with advanced technologies. These will be a great phase for China's development,” he stressed.