Oct 3 / 2019
Latest News / A.I./ Blockchain news
katy micallef
Posted by: Katy Micallef

Malta launches National AI Strategy

AI set to be a central theme at upcoming AIBC Summit

The government of Malta has officially launched the country’s AI strategy. The release of the document follows a period of public consultation on The Malta Ethical AI framework. The strategy, which is titled ‘Malta the Ultimate AI Launchpad: A Strategy and Vision for Artificial Intelligence in Malta 2030′, aims to usher in the benefits which will result from this next wave of innovation, ensuring they reach across all segments of Maltese society.

aibc Malta launches National AI Strategy
The Prime Minister of Malta, Joseph Muscat at the Malta AI and Blockchain Summit 2018.

The regulatory framework is likely to attract a wealth of AI companies to Malta and will focus on businesses that have internal operations operating on AI.

The Prime Minister of Malta, the Hon. Joseph Muscat has highlighted that the country’s ambitions have carried it forward, bringing it to the forefront of tech innovation and positioning it a pioneer jurisdiction, saying that while others have been reluctant to regulate tech such as blockchain, Malta has been an example to follow.

“We made great strides compared to other countries as we were ambitious in our initiatives,” he said

Muscat also said that the government’s work is now moving to the AI and E-sport sectors, adding that the governance recognises the importance of emerging technologies.

“We want to be the government that becomes one of the first that is AI powered and leads by example. We are committed to implementing pilot projects in priority areas like education, healthcare, transport and customer relations. We encounter AI daily, from the algorithms controlling our newsfeed, to the use of search engines.”

Parliamentary Secretary for the Digital Economy,  Silvio Schembri.

Parliamentary Secretary Silvio Schembri, who features as the face of upcoming Block magazine publication has also been clear that the government has taken a firm stance on technological innovation. He is clear that innovation must be allowed to flourish and that Malta has a strong, leading role to play in this industry. “It should be embraced and not stifled, he says. Malta should be a disrupter rather than a follower, in order to bring about positive social and economic transformation.

“I am proud to announce that Malta will become the first country to launch a National AI Certification programme,” he said, which will be built on Malta’s ethical AI framework, aiming to create trust in AI, transparency and accountability.

The programme will be voluntary initially, and aims to provide applicants with valuable recognition in the marketplace, that their AI systems developed in a transparent and responsible manner.   Certification would be given after an audit by independent examiners takes place.

“We want to team up with, share and also co-innovate with governments, organisations, researchers and others from around the globe to explore, showcase and champion the benefits AI delivers.  We want to become the ultimate AI launchpad, a place where local and foreign companies can develop and test AI and showcase the value of their innovation across an entire nation primed for adoption. We want to create platform for AI to springboard it across the world.”

In synergy with this line of the thought, AIBC Malta has positioned itself as a thought leader in this field, with the upcoming November summit featuring a series of high quality conferences which aim to spark debate on the valuable contributions the digital sphere has to offer, not just to Malta, but globally.

Illustrious figures such as Angelo Dalli and David Orban are set to address the challenges facing regulators, while the Prime Minister and Parliamentary Secretary will both give keynotes on the future of this thriving industry. Angelo Dalli himself is in fact a member of the Malta.ai Taskforce.

The summit will also feature an AI Start-up Pitch, bringing valuable investment opportunities and sound advice to start-ups looking to benefit from Malta’s advantageous and forward-thinking legislative framework.

The strategy takes a holistic approach and includes three areas which are central to the implementation of the strategy. These are investment, public sector adoption and private sector adoption, with AI playing a transformative role in the way public sector resources are delivered, making the government more efficieint and improving internal operations and making better use of tax money.

“Malta will seek to attract and develop talent, drive investment, and incubate an ecosystem to allow the AI sector to flourish. The government will look to nurture, attract and welcome companies of all sizes, from start-ups to global tech leaders,” said Muscat.

The government will undertake at least 6 AI pilot projects in coming 3 years, including ones in the education, transportation and energy sectors.

About AIBC:

Malta AI & Blockchain Summit is a bi-annual expo covering topics relating to the global sectors for blockchain, AI, Big Data, IoT, and Quantum technologies. The event includes conferences hosted by globally renowned speakers, workshops for industry learning and discussion, an exhibition space accommodating more than 400 brands and a number of networking events.

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