Prime Minister Rishi Sunak has used his visit to the US this week to pitch the UK as the global leader in the field of artificial intelligence (AI) safety, announcing a first-of-its-kind worldwide summit to be hosted in Britain later this year.
India is expected to be among the group of “likeminded allies and companies” to be brought together as the world grapples with the challenges and opportunities presented by the rapid advancement of AI. During his wide-ranging bilateral talks with US President Joe Biden, Sunak had technology high on the agenda.
He said: “AI has an incredible potential to transform our lives for the better. But we need to make sure it is developed and used in a way that is safe and secure.
“Time and time again throughout history we have invented paradigm-shifting new technologies and we have harnessed them for the good of humanity. That is what we must do again.
“No one country can do this alone. This is going to take a global effort. But with our vast expertise and commitment to an open, democratic international system, the UK will stand together with our allies to lead the way.”
The AI global summit will be held in the UK this autumn to consider the risks of AI, including frontier systems, and discuss how they can be mitigated through internationally coordinated action. It will also provide a platform for countries to work together on further developing a shared approach to mitigate these risks.
Next month, UK Foreign Secretary James Cleverly will also convene the first-ever briefing of the United Nations (UN) Security Council on the opportunities and risks of AI for international peace and security.
“The UK is well-placed to convene discussions on the future of AI. The UK is a world-leader in AI – ranking third behind the US and China. Our AI sector already contributes £3.7 billion to the UK economy and employs 50,000 people across the country,” Downing Street said.
In recent weeks, Sunak has discussed this issue with a number of businesspeople and world leaders including Google’s Global Indian CEO Sundar Pichai.
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“On artificial intelligence, they spoke about striking the right balance to ensure the right regulatory guardrails are in place, whilst driving forward innovation. They discussed possible opportunities for industry and international collaboration on safe and responsible AI development and agreed to remain in touch on this issue,” Downing Street said in a readout of that meeting recently.