Mikhail Mishustin’s opening remarks:
Good afternoon, colleagues,
The President has issued instructions on updating the National Strategy for the Development of Artificial Intelligence for the period until 2030. We must make amendments which include, in part, the implementation of a package of measures aimed at the nationwide implementation of AI technologies in the economy, the social sphere and in state governance.
We held an in-depth discussion on these issues at the July meeting with the President.
AI-based products help enhance the efficiency of entire economic sectors and advance them to a fundamentally new level. These products are widely used for data analysis, forecasting, process optimisation, industrial automation, and the launch of convenient and useful services for people and businesses.
It is extremely important for these products to be created in Russia. This is necessary for ensuring our independence from foreign suppliers and for strengthening national security. This will also create additional opportunities for people and businesses.
Today, global players are fighting to take the lead in the technological race, often using unfair competitive practices. Efforts are being taken to hinder Russia’s access to advanced technologies. However, it is of the essence that our producers have adjusted to this situation.
The market for AI products and technology reached nearly 650 billion roubles last year, an increase of approximately 18 percent.
About a thousand Russian companies are working in this area and are on the register of innovation companies.
Unlike many other countries, global-level products are manufactured here. For example, both Yandex and Sber have launched their own models of neural networks.
The rate of artificial intelligence use in the economic sectors is at about 20 percent right now, with the top one being the financial sector where 95 percent of enterprises use these technologies.
Of course, the potential is much higher, and we need to attract the business community more actively to fully implement it. We will definitely continue to provide state assistance.
In total, 5.2 billion roubles are being allocated from federal funds for the development of artificial intelligence next year.
The next very important area is the development of scientific institutions related to these technologies. Today, there are more than 60 in Russia. The year before last we chose six leading centres. Over 5 billion roubles have been allocated for research at these institutions.
This year, at least six more organisations are to be selected that will receive state grants. They will be able to implement popular projects for priority sectors of the economy.
It is necessary to create conditions not only to generate promising solutions, but also to test them and to further introduce them to the market which is very important, so that ideas do not remain on paper but are realised and yield tangible benefits.
In Russia, the management and ethical regulation of the AI market is one of the most progressive in the world. We have eight experimental legal regimes. Two of them relate to medicine and the other six to highly automated vehicles and autonomous aircraft. This allows us to put new technology to the test and see how useful it is, and then create an efficient legal framework.
The widespread use of innovations always comes with potential challenges. Among them are issues related to the recording and protection of personal data, information security in general, protection of intellectual property, as well the influence of such technology on people. All of this should be taken into account during our work.
Many are still wary of new technology, including that based on artificial intelligence. Especially when it comes to such areas that are sensitive in terms of public morals like education, healthcare and the social support. Therefore, it is necessary to approach the introduction of smart solutions very carefully and be guided by public opinion and receive the feedback our President always talks about. It is also necessary to use only time-tested developments that have proven safe and relevant and that will have concrete value, and that will show the advantages of their use. Naturally, we need to consider the possible risks and consequences so that they will not impact people. Only then will our society trust such innovations.
Our country has an AI code of ethics, which some 270 companies have signed onto. About 20 of them are foreign companies. The document says that the main priority in the development of such technologies is the protection of the interests and rights of people in general and every individual person in particular. I believe that companies and organisations of this important sector should be guided by this document.
As I said, we have yet to draft an updated national strategy on this. It should provide for increasing computational capacities, launching venture financing at the middle stage of project implementation, eliminating regulatory barriers when it is possible, and improving international cooperation.
It is important to outline the basic scenarios of supporting artificial intelligence in Russia that will serve as a basis for the updated strategy. We also need to consider the entire array of measures necessary for reaching the tasks in this sector as set by the President.