AI Regulatory Race bolstered as the UK hosts a Global Safety Measure Summit this Autumn

AI Regulatory Race bolstered as the UK hosts a Global Safety Measure Summit this Autumn

Following meetings with the US president, Congress and business leaders, the government says the UK will host a global AI safety measure summit this autumn to evaluate the tech’s “most significant risks”. 

Prime Minister Rishi Sunak claimed the UK was the “natural place” to lead the conversation on AI with recent meetings with the bosses of leading AI firms as evidence of this. 

It also highlighted the 50,000 people employed in the sector, which is said to be worth £3.7 billion to the UK. 

However, with further dire warnings circulating about the potentially existential threat AI poses to humanity, global regulators are scrambling to invent new rules to contain its risks. 

report from McKinsey predicted that between 2016 and 2030, AI-related advancements could affect around 15 per cent of the global workforce, even possibly displacing 400 million workers worldwide. 

Who shall be attending the summit is not yet known, but the government has planned on bringing together “key countries, leading tech companies and researchers to agree safety measures”. 

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Mr Sunak wants to ensure the benefits of AI are “harnessed for the good of humanity” as it “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.” 

Sridhar Iyengar, Managing Director of Zoho Europe, commented: Earlier this year, the whitepaper released in the UK highlighted the numerous advantages of Artificial Intelligence, emphasising its potential as a valuable tool for enhancing business operations. With the Government’s ongoing ambition to position the UK as a Science and Technology Superpower by 2030, and coupled with Chancellor Jeremy Hunt reiterating his vision of making the UK the “next Silicon Valley”, the UK’s leading input here could be extremely helpful in achieving these goals.” 

“AI is set to play an important role, particularly as the economy stabilises, given its remarkable potential to enhance various aspects such as customer service, data analysis, fraud detection and forecasting, excelling business efficiencies.” 

“To fully harness the power of AI and ensure optimal outcomes for all stakeholders, a global regulatory framework supported by public trust is essential. As AI becomes increasingly integrated into our daily lives, adopting a unified approach to regulations becomes crucial.” 

However, there have been questions surrounding the UK’s leadership credentials in the field. 

A research fellow at Chatham House’s Digital Society Initiative, Yasmin Afina, has stated that the UK could possibly be “too ambitious” as there are “stark differences in governance and regulatory approaches” between the EU and US, which the UK would struggle to reconcile, and several existing global initiatives, including the UN’s Global Digital Compact, which had “stronger foundational bases already”. 

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She added that the UK should “perhaps focus on promoting responsible behaviour in the research, development and deployment of these technologies”. 

An Artificial Intelligence Act is already in the works from the European Union, but it has been acknowledged that it could take two-and-a-half years to come into effect, and China has also began drawing up AI regulations, including proposals that companies must notify users whenever an AI algorithm is being used.

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