When the APK is created, will it be signed with the keystore associated with my account. is there no need to upload the keystore to the Play Developer console.
Yes it will be signed, and ready to publish to google play.
You can export your key, and then upload it to google play, so google will save it and sign behind you, but it’s not necessary.
In any case, you must save your key for future use.
from where to export
Three last choices.