Wednesday, April 24, 2024

Singapore invests $740 million in AI

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Singapore will invest US$740 million (S$1 billion) over the next five years to accelerate AI development, including secure access to the necessary computing and talent.

This was announced by Singapore’s Deputy Prime Minister Lawrence Wong in his 2024 Budget Statement last Friday.

Singapore first announced its AI plan in 2019. This was followed by the National AI Strategy 2.0 (NAIS 2.0), announced late last year, which envisioned bringing the benefits of AI not only to Singapore but also to the region and beyond.

Touted as a whole-of-government and whole-of-economy approach, NAIS 2.0 includes plans to triple the existing AI talent pool to 15,000 people from about 4,500 today.

innovative technology

In his speech, Wong emphasized that the government views AI as a general-purpose technology with the potential to transform a wide range of industries and improve productivity.

“AI doesn’t just mean ChatGPT or large-scale language models. It’s general-purpose technology like electricity, the internal combustion engine, computers, and the Internet,” Wong said.

“This has the potential to transform a wide range of industries and improve productivity across many existing processes, from drug discovery to warehouse organization to vehicle operation.”

A portion of the investment will be used to ensure Singapore has access to advanced chips, which are critical to the development and deployment of AI.

The government will work with leading companies to establish an AI center of excellence here to “foster collaboration and innovation and drive greater value creation across the economy.”

Supports AI

In the same speech, Mr Wong also said Singapore will set aside additional resources to upgrade its national broadband network to enable the mass market to access 10Gbps internet access.

This investment will be used to ensure our backend infrastructure can support emerging technologies such as immersive media and AI. The timeline for achieving that is by the late 2010s, with work starting by the middle of this year.

“The growing need for employee training on AI reflects the focus of Singapore’s Budget 2024 and is expected to continue to evolve the business environment,” said Eileen Chua, Managing Director, SAP Singapore. states.

“As the demand for AI expertise increases in this digital economy, building a skills-centric organization where expertise and know-how are prioritized over roles and titles will improve business agility and employee experience. . [To] To achieve this, companies need to understand their employees holistically and unlock their potential by providing opportunities for growth and development. ”

Image credit: iStockphoto/Leon Chopin

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