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Research Deputy Minister signs MED9 Declaration on AI

Cyprus has set clear goals and milestones in its digital transformation in line with EU priorities, Deputy Minister of Research, Innovation and Digital Policy, Philippos Hadjizacharias, said during a MED9 meeting for Ministers of Digital Economy.

He also signed on behalf of the Republic of Cyprus, the MED9 Joint Declaration on Artificial Intelligence.

Hadjizacharias signed the Joint Declaration during the MED9 Ministerial Meeting held on 20 September in Malta.

The Deputy Minister, in his intervention during the meeting, among other things, expressed Cyprus’ determination to achieve a dual green and digital transformation, accelerating the implementation of advanced technologies, such as 5G, optical fibres, high-performance computing, the Internet of Things, Artificial Intelligence (AI) and blockchain technology.

According to a Deputy Ministry statement on 21 September, Hadjizacharias said that harnessing digital technologies and optimising innovation capacity was vital in order to support growth that would lead to greener, more inclusive, sustainable economies and more resilient societies.

Advanced digital technologies have already generated significant benefits, particularly in the form of increased efficiency, accuracy, timeliness, and convenience in a wide range of public services, he added, noting that Cyprus has set clear goals and milestones in its digital transformation in line with EU priorities.

Artificial intelligence, in particular, is poised to unleash the next wave of digital transformation as it can help businesses become more innovative, more agile, and more adaptive than ever before, he said.

He mentioned that, at the national level, in 2020 the Cypriot Government approved its national strategy on AI with an implementation goal of 2026, based on four main pillars: maximising investments through partnerships, creating national data spaces, promoting talent and lifelong learning, and the development of an ethical and trustworthy AI.

Hadjizacharias also said that Cyprus’ national strategy included implementing AI solutions in the public sector, such as AI chatbots, while they were also looking at AI for adaptive learning in education, for predictions and crisis management, and the impact of AI on production development models.

He also noted that the EU's AI Regulation, a legislative proposal in the final stages before approval, is set to become the world's first comprehensive legal framework for artificial intelligence, adding that, it has attracted international attention and could set a global standard, based on European values.

He said that, artificial intelligence, however, presents not only opportunities but also significant challenges, and that it must be ensured that human rights, democracy, and the rule of law are protected in an ever-evolving digital environment.

In conclusion, Hadjizacharias said it was important to ensure that not only artificial intelligence but digital transformation, in general, is human-centered and protects the rights and fundamental freedoms of citizens, and called for more cooperation between MED9 states, in order to address the challenges and opportunities in the fields of digital technology, research, space and cyber security at European level.

(Source: CNA)

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