Volvo CEO Hakan Samuelsson said accidents were unfortunate and the industry had to move carefully, but that "saying no to technology would be the wrong answer" given human error was also a big factor in many collisions.
"Technology is still the most promising answer to reducing [accidents]," he said at the event in Beijing.
In China, official support for driverless technology remains strong. The government gave its consent to Internet firm Baidu to test self-driving cars on city streets just days after the fatal accident in the United States.
Baidu, which has a self-driving project dubbed Apollo, is leading China's push in driverless technology, with the government keen to keep up with global rivals such as Tesla and Waymo, the self-driving arm of Google parent Alphabet.