Martin Ford scrive sul NY Times che l’automatizzazione sta avvenendo molto più in fretta del previsto — e di quanto avvenga in Europa o America — in Cina. Foxxcon, ad esempio, ha intenzione di automatizzare circa il 70% della sua forza lavoro entro tre anni:

In 2014, Chinese factories accounted for about a quarter of the global ranks of industrial robots — a 54 percent increase over 2013. According to the International Federation of Robotics, it will have more installed manufacturing robots than any other country by 2017.

Midea, a leading manufacturer of home appliances in the heavily industrialized province of Guangdong, plans to replace 6,000 workers in its residential air-conditioning division, about a fifth of the work force, with automation by the end of the year. Foxconn, which makes consumer electronics for Apple and other companies, plans to automate about 70 percent of factory work within three years, and already has a fully robotic factory in Chengdu.