A major US-China artificial intelligence strategy could change the world, a leading academic said on Monday, calling for a joint effort to combat AI.
Artificial intelligence, or AI, has become a key tool in the US and China’s efforts to crack open strategic markets, including in financial markets.
Analysts believe China’s ambitions to become a major economic force are now reaching a turning point.
They fear AI could become the dominant technology in the coming decades, with its impact on everything from healthcare to transportation and the economy.
China’s national AI bureau has launched a “big push” to develop AI and build a national AI strategy to compete with the US, according to an article in the state-run Global Times.
The US is a major player in AI, with companies like Amazon and Google, as well as major US corporations like Facebook, Apple and Microsoft.
China, however, has been a leader in developing and deploying AI in the past, leading to its creation of the National Artificial Intelligence Laboratory in 2015.
A joint effort is the most likely scenario, said Yang Zhiming, a professor of artificial intelligence at the National University of Singapore.
He added that China should start a new AI initiative with the United States, and build up its own AI strategy, rather than relying on other countries.
“There are two paths to take.
One is to create a strategy with the Americans, which would be very good,” Yang said.
“The other path is to collaborate with China.”
A Chinese AI team has already announced it will invest US$1bn into a major research facility, the National Institute of General Artificial Intelligence (NIGI), in Singapore.
Chinese President Xi Jinping has also been pushing for the creation of an AI policy to deal with artificial intelligence threats.
But experts say there are still hurdles for China to overtake the United Kingdom, whose AI research is also focused on artificial intelligence.
A separate study by NIGI’s director, Li Fei, suggested the UK’s AI research and development could lead to China taking the lead in AI.
It said the UK is likely to be the leader in AI and will be able to develop the most advanced AI strategy in the world in 10 to 15 years, said Li.
China and the United Arab Emirates (UAE) are among the world’s top 10 AI markets, but have been fighting a war over AI development in the Middle East and Asia.
“China will overtake the US in 2020, and by then, the US will have lost its leading role in AI,” said Yang.
“They will be behind the US on the global stage, but the UK will remain the world leader in the field of AI,” he said.
China also has a number of other projects to boost AI research, including the National Cyber Security Research Center, which is expected to be fully operational by 2021.
Yang said China would also need to develop its own version of a smart thermostat, which could reduce the amount of time it takes for homes to cool down after a power outage.
“It will also have to find ways to better regulate the amount and intensity of AI in China,” he added.
China is also considering creating a “social media” agency to manage social media accounts.