Costa Rican Robotics Industry Gets Boost

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    The Costa Rica News (TCRN) – Costa Rica is clear about that the development of robotics in the country’s academics which is intended to encourage the student population to pursue careers in engineering and thus meet the demand of companies in Foreign Direct Investment (FDI) in the field.

    The sector of the technology industry with operations in Costa Rica is one of the main generators of employment and export indicators.

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    The employment area is high in this industrial area, because today there are more than 250 multinational high-tech companies that were established in the country in the last 30 years.

    That same operations generated a total of 80 thousand direct and 120 thousand indirect jobs.

    The total flow of FDI has grown at an average annual rate of 15.1% since 2002. In 2013, FDI accounted for 5.5% of gross domestic products per capita investment and said it reached $570.

    According to the Costa Rican Coalition for Development Initiatives (Cinde) advanced manufacturing generates 17,164 jobs. In 2000 there was a cumulative 30 companies and 4,500 jobs total. The amount increased to 2013-17164 hired people and 48 companies in operation. The number of companies in this sector is 2.1 times higher than in 2000 and employment is 4 times greater than shown in the same year.

    Again the issue of talent shortage in technological areas continues to hit the country in terms of meeting the demand of professionals.

    Hence the opening of new techniques and electronic engineering careers enable companies to leverage local talent to meet the coverage of robotic systems in industrial processes.

    Even in the latest study by Manpower, which was applied to a total of 624 employers in the country, difficulties to fill technical positions, a trend that is unchanged since last year, occurred.

    In the study, qualified engineers and technical manual trades are the first points of the shortage of professionals in the country to be placed.

    Eric Quesada, Regional Commercial Director of Manpower, said the trend is showing a marked need for companies to hire engineers and technical professionals.

    “We see that in Costa Rica was a growing shortage of talent by 11% compared to 2013. This reveals that there are important changes in the country to encourage the interest of young people to pursue careers more akin to the needs of the market, and that this would be the key to combating the current unemployment rates,” explained Quesada.

    Hence promoting electronics and mechatronics engineering work has become a priority in the country.

    Both professions are crucial for high-tech industrial projects related to industrial robotics or maintenance.

    Leda Muñoz, executive director of the Omar Dengo Foundation, says that the country develops education programs to encourage robotics as part of a strategy to meet the demand for labor by the international high-tech companies operating in country.

    “I think the country does have the ability to give such labor. By increasing the number of professionals in related robotics can meet the demand of business areas, “explained Muñoz.

    The director also adds that the main challenge as a country is also to change the trend in career preferences of young people and increase the population in areas of specialized engineering in mechatronics.

    The same approach has Carrasquilla Aris, director of the Career Institute of Technology Mechatronics Costa Rica, who notes that robotics as such should be further developed within the plans to make the country a target of firms in these technological areas.

    “We can not talk without mechatronics and robotics electronics. In the technology we have a population of 400 students in the area of mechatronics. Both have employment opportunity in the technology industry operating in the country,” stressed Carrasquilla.

    The Costa Rica News (TCRN)

    San Jose, Costa Rica

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