LONDON (Reuters) – Britain must act quickly to become a technology capital, Prime Minister Rishi Sunak told technology leaders on Monday, urging them to recognize the opportunities and challenges of artificial intelligence.
“Technological plastics are changing,” says Sunak, speaking at the start of London Tech Week.
“We need to act — and act fast — not only to maintain our position as one of the world’s technology capitals, but to go further and make this the best country in the world to start, grow and invest in technology businesses,” Sunak said, according to a press release from his office.
“It’s my goal. And I feel a sense of urgency and responsibility to make sure it’s caught.”
Governments around the world are trying to find a balance to assess and manage some of the negative effects of AI without stifling innovation.
In March, Britain opted to split AI regulatory responsibilities between bodies responsible for human rights, health and safety and competition, rather than creating a new body dedicated to the technology.
Sunak compares how the tech sector can grow the economy and how government works with businesses to take advantage of the opportunities presented by transformative technologies like AI, comparing it to the advent of the Internet.
During a visit to Washington last week, Sunak said Britain would host an international meeting on artificial intelligence security this year and discuss how to reduce it through coordinated global action.
“Opportunities are extraordinary. But we have to – and we will – do it safely,” he said on Monday.
(Reporting by Kylie MacLellan; Editing by Sharon Singleton)