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Japan firms turn to robots as labour shortage bites

Tokyo's Hen na Hotel uses egg-shaped robots called Tapia to serve guests in its 100 rooms. These robots can wake guests up, manage their schedule and control devices such as the TV and air conditioning.


DESPERATE to overcome Japan's growing shortage of labour, mid-sized companies are planning to buy robots and other equipment to automate a wide range of tasks, including manufacturing, earth-moving and hotel-room service.

According to a Bank of Japan (BOJ) survey, companies

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