China is developing a “automation plant” to create and sell robots in factories and warehouses, and to manufacture the parts, a company official said Friday.
The announcement came as Chinese leaders continued to push for more manufacturing jobs as the world grapples with a sharp slowdown in global growth.
Chinese President Xi Jinping, in a speech to the nation on Friday, said the country needed to develop “a new industrial base that is autonomous, in charge, self-reliant, and capable of manufacturing and distributing products on its own terms.”
Xi said that this will require a “robotic industrial system” that would allow Chinese workers to “be a part of the new production system.”
China’s Ministry of Commerce said the automated manufacturing system is “currently being developed” and that it would be rolled out in 2020, the official Xinhua News Agency said.
It did not provide details on the manufacturing facility.
China has struggled to produce goods and services at a rapid pace since the end of a decades-long economic boom in the 1990s and early 2000s.
The country has been expanding its production capacity in recent years and has seen rapid growth in its workforce, which has surpassed 10 million.
Last year, China exported goods worth $1.2 trillion, or $7.6 trillion, a 10.3% jump from a year earlier, according to data compiled by Bloomberg.
The growth in Chinese manufacturing jobs comes as the economy struggles with the global financial crisis and a drop in global trade.
Last month, the World Bank reported that the Chinese economy grew by 7.2% in the first quarter of 2019, the fastest pace in four years.
The central bank also said that exports of goods to China fell 6.5% in March.
The U.S. has struggled with an economy that is recovering from the economic meltdown, and the country’s unemployment rate is nearly twice that of the United States, which saw a 6.7% rate last year.