SPARC: Europe mobilizes 2.8 billion € for robotics

Neelie KroesThis is alongside Bernd Liepert, president of the euRobotics program and Technical Director of Kuka and Herman Bruyninckx, Vice President of euRobotics that the vice-President of the European Commission Neelie Kroes has launched the automatica 2014 edition. The head of the commission’s digital agenda presented on this occasion a vast programme to put Europe on the global Robotics market. The program, dubbed SPARC should be relayed by manufacturers in the sector and should mobilize in total EUR 2.8 billion. An effort which, according to the Commission, is expected to generate 240 000 jobs on the continent.

Europe holds 35% of the world market for robots

Neelie Kroes Unveils SPARC research program at the exhibition AUTOMATICA 2014

Neelie Kroes Unveils SPARC research program at the exhibition AUTOMATICA 2014

Europe must be a mere consumer of robots, but should be part of those that produce, that’s kinda the idea defended by Neelie Kroes during the opening of the exhibition Automatica 2014 conference. The Vice-President of the European Commission estimated that Europe holds 35% of the market of World Robotics, a market which it valued at EUR 20 billion in 2011. This share would reach even 63% on professional service robots. A share that it will have to fiercely defend when we see ongoing efforts in research and development by the Korea of the South and the Japan and now the United States who want to get back in the race.

Each robot wears 3.6 human jobs on its ‘shoulders ‘.


Agile Justin, the robot presented by the Institute for robotics and Mechatronics of the German DLR at Automatica 2014.

Among the arguments developed by the head of the digital agenda for Europe, the idea that Robotics is a job engine. An idea that goes against conventional wisdom, since 70% of Europeans believe that robots destroy the jobs of humans. According to figures presented by Neelie Kroes, is just the opposite: each robot would be on his shoulders no less than 3.6 human jobs, or 2 million indirect jobs on the continent.
To carry its offensive, the Vice President announced a research program funded by the Commission to the tune of EUR 700 million.
This SPARC program, launched in the form of public-private partnerships will be echoed by participating manufacturers on a ratio of 1 to 3, a total of 2.8 billion euros injected into research by 2020. This envelope should finance the work of 12 000 researchers in the 200 companies that should join the program. It should create 75 000 direct jobs in service Robotics and still generate the figures advanced by Neelie Kroes, 140 000 indirect jobs. In total, the Commission expects no less 80 billion euros of additional BNP.
Fine ambition, beautiful program, remains to be seen what place the french industrialists will take in the SPARC program presented in Munich…

Translation : Bing Translation

Source : Speech by Neelie Kroes on the exhibition Automatica 2014: “Lighting a SPARC under our competitive economy“, June 3, 2014

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