Turkish AI startups expected to grow

Turkish AI startups expected to grow

⁠AI policies needed to ensure data privacy and safety of users, says Türkiye’s vice president

By Harun Kutbe

ANKARA (AA) –Turkish artificial intelligence (AI) startups are expected to grow rapidly, with the country’s vice president, Cevdet Yilmaz, saying Thursday that there are over 700 in Türkiye.

Speaking at the AI Tomorrow Summit organized by the Artificial Intelligence Policies Association (AIPA), Yilmaz noted that AI goes through groundbreaking developments every day, at a pace that cannot be compared to any change in history, as the transformative impact of AI is already apparent in many areas of life.

Yilmaz cited a study which says that the contribution of AI to the global economy is expected to reach approximately $15.7 trillion by 2030, $6.6 trillion of which will stem from productivity and $9.1 trillion of which will be from consumption.

He underlined that the global gross national product is expected to rise 14% in 2030 with AI, and it is expected that AI will contribute to the global economy more than the economic size of China and India, resulting in 40% of jobs worldwide being affected, according to another study.

Yilmaz highlighted the importance of robust AI policies to ensure safety.

“The data-driven nature of AI requires quality data to be produced and that data to be shared within the relevant ecosystem, resulting in challenges in protecting the privacy of data, ensuring cybersecurity and observing ethics in the processing of data.”

Yilmaz said there are already more than 40 AI-focused master’s and doctoral programs in Türkiye, as well as AI and robotics research centers at more than 30 universities, with 71 new associate’s degrees and undergraduate programs planned in the coming period, as the adaptation of the youth to AI and such technology is of importance.

He underlined that the Ministry of National Education already updated the curriculum at all stages of public education to include AI topics while working to open AI workshops in all 81 provinces of Türkiye.

He mentioned a project aimed at the youth by Türkiye’s Digital Transformation Office aiming to gather AI-related university clubs under the same initiative to work together.

Yilmaz added that the ministry attaches great importance to developments in AI as they bring students, the private sector and academia together for AI-focused studies with AI initiatives launched by the Scientific and Technological Research Council of Türkiye (TUBITAK).

*Writing by Emir Yildirim in Istanbul

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