Logistics Robots Coming into Wider Use in Japan


Tokyo, Sept. 17 (Jiji Press)--An increasing number of companies in Japan are introducing robots that automatically transport goods and parts at their warehouses and factories.

Rationalizing logistics is an urgent issue amid the ever-growing popularity of e-commerce and labor shortages.

The logistics robot market is booming also because of the so-called 2024 problem, or the introduction of an overtime cap for truck drivers from April next year that is seen resulting in serious driver shortages.

Amazon.com introduced about 2,600 self-propelled robots at its large-scale logistics base in the eastern Japan city of Chiba, which started operations in late August. Out of more than 30,000 product shelves, the robots pick up shelves containing ordered goods and automatically deliver them to employees in charge.

As the robots help save time, "we can increase inventories by up to 40 pct," a company official said. Amazon.com acquired in 2012 the U.S. company that developed the system to promote its introduction.

[Copyright The Jiji Press, Ltd.]

Jiji Press