UK to Spend £100 Million of Taxpayer Money on AI Chips

UTC by Darya Rudz · 3 min read
UK to Spend £100 Million of Taxpayer Money on AI Chips
Photo: Rishi Sunak / Facebook

The UK government has been reportedly running negotiations with such giants as Nvidia, Advanced Micro Devices, and Intel about the supply of the equipment required to establish a national “AI Research Resource”.

UK Prime Minister Rishi Sunak is planning to invest up to £100 million sourced from taxpayer money in the production of computer chips used to power artificial intelligence (AI). The move is UK’s attempt to go ahead in the global computing power rivalry.

The UK government has been reportedly running negotiations with such giants as Nvidia Corporation (NASDAQ: NVDA), Advanced Micro Devices Inc (NASDAQ: AMD), and Intel Corporation (NASDAQ: INTC) about the supply of the equipment required to establish a national “AI Research Resource”. Nvidia is the best option and the government’s preferred choice since it has a proven track record of producing AI-optimized chips. As many as 5,000 graphics processing units (GPUs) might be purchased from NVIDIA by the UK Research and Innovation Agency.

The UK AI Research Resource is set to launch next summer. Its purpose will be to support UK researchers and companies in innovating AI applications and maintaining international competitiveness.

UK’s AI Vision

Currently, the UK is behind the US and Asia where artificial intelligence is developing rapidly, expanding its reach to a number of industries. Therefore, UK Prime Minister Rishi Sunak wants to enhance AI research in the country and make London a hub for AI companies. The government aims to strengthen the UK’s position as a global leader in AI, by ensuring the UK is the best place to develop and use AI technologies.

Earlier, Rishi Sunak stated:

“The possibilities (of AI) are extraordinary. But we must – and we will – do it safely. I want to make the UK not just the intellectual home, but the geographical home of global AI safety regulation.”

In May, Sunak’s government announced plans to invest £1 billion over 10 years in semiconductor research, design and production. Meanwhile, the US passed the CHIPS and Science Act which included $52 billion to boost domestic chip production in 2022. Thus, it is obvious that £100 million invested by the UK is far from being sufficient for encompassing AI.

Currently, there is currently no holistic body of law governing the development, deployment or use of AI in the UK. Instead, developers, deployers and users abide by the existing fragmented network of rules under the UK regulatory ecosystem.

Earlier this year, the UK government set out its AI vision in the document named “Establishing a pro-innovation approach to AI regulation” which relies on two main elements: AI principles that existing regulators will be asked to implement, and a set of new ‘central functions’ to support this work. The key principles regulation should be based on include safety, security, robustness; appropriate transparency and explainability; fairness; accountability and governance; and contestability and redress.

Over the next year, regulators are set to publish guidance interpreting the principles in their domain and provide practical tools to help companies comply with the principles.

Artificial Intelligence, News, Technology News
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