France Outperforms Britain as Robots Transform Car Industry


Reading time ( words)

The number of robots installed by the French car industry rose 22% to 1,400 units – compared with 700 units in the UK (+ 7%). The automotive sector is one of the main driving forces modernizing the French economy: with a robot density of 940 units per 10,000 workers, France currently ranks 2nd within the European Union - the UK ranks 10th with 606 units. These are the latest results of the World Robotics Report 2016 published by the International Federation of Robotics (IFR).

French investments in machinery accelerate

In France, investment in machinery and equipment are accelerating at a faster pace than the overall economy. The frontrunners here are the dynamic showcase industries, such as automotive: annual robot sales to the automotive industry as a whole increased by an average of 7% per year between 2010 and 2015. During the same period, the motor vehicle sector ordered on average 6% more robots per year and the demand from automotive parts suppliers increased by 9%. Since 2010, governmental initiatives to strengthen production in France have resulted in significant investments by the automotive industry. The two French automotive suppliers, PSA and Renault, will further invest in new car models, energy efficient cars, common platforms and also modernize their factories. Both companies have already successfully restructured to insure their position for increased productivity to meet the demand. Automotive parts suppliers will benefit from investments by the automotive industry in France as well as from the improving car market in Europe.

Automotive companies face up to Brexit

It is not unfair to assume that the decision to leave the EU will influence investment decisions by foreign car companies on production sites in the UK. For example, Japanese auto makers such as Toyota, Nissan and Honda export more than three quarters of their vehicles built in Britain, and most of these exports go to other European countries. Were they to have to pay duty on the shipments of goods, they might decide to move out of the UK. We assume, however, that the UK government will develop regulations and supporting measures to avoid this. In any case, there are currently frequent announcements on investment plans concerning capacity expansions and modernization by foreign and local automotive companies. Investments in the general industry sector should also gain momentum. The development of robot installations in the next few years depends on the question “if and when” these planned projects will actually be implemented in the country. This said, it can be assumed that investments planned by domestic manufacturers will most likely go ahead and that and that modernization, as well as a strengthening of their overall competitiveness, will continue unabated.

Robots support competitiveness and employment in Europe

“The positive impact of robots on European competitiveness and employment can be seen in Germany,” said Joe Gemma, President of the International Federation of Robotics. “The country´s automotive sector, for instance, holds the top position for robot density in Europe - with about 1,150 industrial robots per 10,000 employees. As a result of the ongoing trend to automate production, employment in the German car industry rose by about 93,000 jobs to 813,000 during the period 2010 to 2015.” In France, modernization and digitalization of production systems is increasingly likely to involve small and medium enterprises over the coming years. The country´s main strength lies in industrial software and networking objects which could positively impact the implementation of new production concepts and create scope for employing innovative machinery and equipment and likely create new opportunities for skilled labor.

Share


Suggested Items

Today’s MilAero Options, Part 1: 'Pride Goeth Before...'

04/12/2016 | Marc Carter
Historians, with their 20/20 hindsight, often write about the inevitable decline and fall of kingdoms, empires, religions, organizations, governments, and all the other permanent structures we humans build.

Wearable Tech Back to a Healthy Development Pace

02/11/2015 | Reed Exhibitions
Wearable tech was a major sensation in 2014. The wearable tech industry generated extensive interest among media, investors, start-ups, wearable tech enthusiasts, technology leaders and trade fairs. Many events were held around wearable products and industry last year. The trend for early 2015 has seen the industry fall back into a healthy developmental pace. Investors are keen to see a return on their capital injections and former start-ups are now reaching maturity.



Copyright © 2017 I-Connect007. All rights reserved.