DTI chief says PH can become powerhouse in artificial intelligence

The chief of the country’s trade department told a gathering of UP alumni that the Philippines has the huge potential to become a major hub for artificial intelligence or AI.

DTI secretary Ramon M. Lopez

In his talk last June 14, Department of Trade and Industry (DTI) secretary Ramon Lopez said the abundant human capital in the Philippines is a rich resource which the country can tap to push its drive to become a major AI destination.

“We see AI becoming a great equalizer wherein our educated, highly skilled, and highly motivated young population can make their mark. Everyone has a place under this new industrial regime, regardless of educational level, or background, or interest,” Lopez told members of the
University of the Philippines School of Economics Alumni Association (UPSEAA).

Lopez is a member of the UPSEAA, which is made up of business executives, entrepreneurs, and economists.

The DTI chief noted that various applications for AI can be used in agriculture, healthcare, finance, retail, transport, and smart cities. AI software revenue by industry is expected to reach more than $100 billion by 2025 while global AI business value is projected to reach $5.8 trillion by 2022.

Lopez also shared the working framework for the formulation of a Philippine AI Strategy. “As we visualize this, we will obtain support from various stakeholders from national, regional, and local champions from schools and universities across the country as well as from industry giants,” Lopez added.

Likewise, the trade chief shared the key elements of inclusive, innovation-led, industrial strategy (i3S), which aims at growing innovative and globally competitive manufacturing, agriculture, and services while strengthening their linkages into domestic and global value chains.

The Philippine government connects stakeholders and integrate the country’s innovation and entrepreneurship ecosystem through the Regional Inclusive Innovation Centers (RIICs) present in different parts of the country.   

“The government’s vision is for the country to have creative and connected communities where innovators, start-ups, MSMEs, and large enterprises can collaborate to produce new products and services. Working together can help us achieve our goal of generating inclusive growth and shared prosperity for all, most especially for those at the bottom of the pyramid,” shared Lopez.

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