Government agencies and private organizations in Singapore are heavily using robots to fill the gap created by labor shortages.

Construction, manufacturing, and the food and beverage industries are increasingly using robots to perform tasks.

According to the manpower ministry, COVID-19 was significant because it speed up the “pace of technology adoption and automation” by companies. Singapore relies on foreign workers but their numbers fell by 235,700 between December 2019 and September 2021.

Singapore employs 605 robots for every 10,000 people employed in manufacturing, the second highest number in the world after South Korea with 932.

The use of robots to support tasks has also been extended to Singapore’s government institutions.

Singapore’s National Library Board has introduced two shelf-reading robots at one of its public libraries that can scan the labels of 100,000 books, or about 30 percent of its collection, per day.

“Staff need not read the call numbers one by one on the shelf, and this reduces the routine and labor-intensive aspects,” said Lee Yee Fuang, assistant director at the national Library.