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Robots to take over 3.5M jobs in Japan by '25

Posted: 11 Apr 2008 ?? ?Print Version ?Bookmark and Share

Keywords:Japan workforce? robot labor? robot function?

A study from the Machine Industry Memorial Foundation stated that robots could fill the jobs of 3.5 million people in Japan by 2025, helping to avert worker shortages as the country's population shrinks.

This is according to a Reuters report, which stated that Japan estimates a 16 percent slide in its workforce by 2030 while the number of elderly will mushroom, raising worries about who will do the work in a country that is unused to, and unwilling to contemplate, large-scale immigration.

The foundation said robots could help fill the gaps, ranging from micro-sized capsules that detect lesions to high-tech vacuum cleaners. In a report, the foundation explained that instead of each robot replacing one person, the robots could make time for people to focus on more important things.

Japan could save about $21 billion of elderly insurance payments in 2025 by using robots that monitor the health of older people, so they don't have to rely on human nursing care, the study said.

Takao Kobayashi, who worked in the study, said changes are still needed for robots to make a big impact on the workforce. Kobayashi cited the expensive price tag and robot functions that still need to be improved as well as the mindsets of people. Kobayashi stressed that people must have the will to use the robots.

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