Sunak: ‘Important to recognise AI doesn’t just automate and take people’s jobs’

26 October 2023, 11:34

Rishi Sunak visiting Moorfields Eye Hospital
Rishi Sunak visit to Moorfields Eye Hospital. Picture: PA

The Prime Minister gave a major speech on artificial intelligence as he pitched the UK as a world-leading country in its development.

Rishi Sunak has said it is too simple to say artificial intelligence will “take people’s jobs” but admitted it would have an impact on the labour market.

The Prime Minister gave a major speech on the emerging technology as he pitched the UK as a world-leading country in its development and regulation.

But he also faced questions about the fate of thousands of jobs across the UK, amid fears about the possibilities of the powerful tech.

Mr Sunak urged the public to see artificial intelligence more as a “co-pilot” in the day-to-day activities of the workplace.

Prime Minister Rishi Sunak delivers a speech setting out how he will address the dangers presented by artificial intelligence while harnessing its benefits at the Royal Society, Carlton House Terrace, London
Prime Minister Rishi Sunak delivers a speech at the Royal Society in London setting out how he will address the dangers presented by AI while harnessing its benefits (Peter Nicholls/PA)

The Prime Minister said: “It’s important to recognise that AI doesn’t just automate and take people’s jobs.”

“A better way to think about it is as a co-pilot,” he said, giving an example of welfare case workers already using AI to help them.

“As with all technologies, they change our labour market, I think over time of course they make our economy more prosperous, more productive.

“They create more growth overall but it does mean that there are changes in the labour market.”

Mr Sunak said the best protection for the next generation of workers was a “world-class education system”.

He said: “It’s hard to predict the exact evolution of everyone’s job and what we can do in Government is make sure that we have a world-class education system.

“That is the best way that I can ensure that everyone in our country benefits from not just AI, but everything that comes our way.”

By Press Association

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