IFR press release

President´s Report

Åke Lindqvist, IFR-PresidentDear members,

I am recently back from Tokyo and digesting the impressions from IREX.
More than 100,000 visitors came to the IREX 2009 at the end of November in Tokyo. That shows the keen interest in robotics despite the still weak economic situation. Signs of a slight recovery are becoming apparent.

It is my impression that IREX 2009 displayed a major focus on service and entertainment robotics, but there were also some interesting industrial robotics concepts and applications.

The main impulses are coming from Asian countries including China, Korea and Japan. But the consequences of the severe economic downturn still appear to impede the recovery.

The dynamic of the economic activities is rather weak as the problems in the international finance system are not yet solved completely and corrections of economic imbalances are slowing the growth. The attendees of the IFR meetings confirmed a rise of requests on projects. A slow and probably long term recovery appears to have started.

Exactly at this crucial point in time, Messe München - the organizer of the AUTOMATICA, which will take place from 8 to 11 June 2010 in Munich, Germany - is drawing the world's attention to the huge potential for robot installations:

The World Automation Atlas, an IFR study ordered by Messe München. (download pdf here 2.3 MB)

Maps are showing the robot density in each country in the total manufacturing industry

  • The Automotive Industry
  • The General Industry

Furthermore, portraits of all our customer industries illustrate developments in the growing and in the traditional markets as well as technology and economic trends.

The study shows at a glance that the trend towards automation will again go on. Our customers, especially the Automotive Industry will have to restructure their business. They will have to realize a more energy-efficient and more eco-friendly production and they have to manufacture more energy-efficient and more eco-friendly products, on the same time as the products must appeal to the consumers.

2010 will again be a demanding year for our business, because the realization of the projects will take a long time. I am convinced that finally, the AUTOMATICA in June 2010 will give the main impulses for new investments in automation. Innovations and solutions will be presented from robot suppliers and integrators as well as from manufacturers of assembly and handling technology and also of machine vision in a broad sence.

With these reflexions, I wish you re-creative holidays together with your families and / or friends. Enjoy these days and let us start the New Year with confidence and power.

The robotics industry will emerge stronger after the crisis!

Kind Regards

Åke Lindqvist
IFR President