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Industrial robot sales rise 8% in 2015 on autos and China
[FRANKFURT] Global sales of industrial robots rose 8 per cent in 2015, driven by demand from the automotive industry and China, the World Robotics Federation said on Tuesday.
Articulated robots - robots with rotary joints - were the most in demand. So-called cobots, which collaborate and work side by side with humans, are also gaining in popularity and are almost ready for routine use in industry.
The number of robots sold exceeded 240,000 for the first time. China cemented its position as the leading market with a rise of 16 per cent to 66,000 units, although this was only half the growth of 30 per cent that the federation had predicted.
The figure includes sales by local Chinese suppliers as well as international manufacturers such as Kuka, Fanuc and ABB.
In Europe, sales rose 9 per cent to nearly 50,000, powered by eastern Europe, while sales in north America rose 11 per cent to 34,000, the federation said.