Prime Minister Joseph Muscat this morning positioned Malta as a centre for existential discussions about the future of Artificial Intelligence (AI) technology.
Muscat was opening the Malta Blockchain Summit, a major conference that has attracted an estimated 5,000 delegates and key speakers, including Sophia – a lifelike humanoid who was last year granted citizenship by Saudi Arabia in a first-ever move.
“It is because we are human that we ask certain questions,” he said. “Sophia will address the summit this afternoon, but will there be a time when people will be invited to speak at a conference organised by robots? Will we one day build machines which will lead to our own extinction? I believe we are more intelligent than that. I want Malta to become a hub for AI innovation and for the regulation of new, intelligent technologies.”
Joseph Muscat addresses the Malta Blockchain Summit
“My message to you is that we want to hear your ideas. Malta is a fertile land for opportunities and discussions, our foundations are solid and we now want to make the next leap for robotics, AI and the Internet of Things to go wherever our imagination takes us.”
As a word of caution, Muscat told innovators that, while he is open to embracing big ideas, it is not his style to rush things.
“We like to do things the right way and at the right pace, and our philosophy is to be honest brokers, where everyone knows where everyone stands. Let’s think big, and together we can make the next leap.”