AI deployment threatens 40% of global jobs, says IMF

The International Monetary Fund (IMF) says nearly 40 per cent global jobs may be lost due to the influence of artificial intelligence, with advanced economies expected to experience a higher impact compared to emerging markets and low-income nations.


Speaking recently, IMF Managing Director Kristalina Georgieva expressed concern AI is likely to exacerbate overall inequality.


Georgieva’s take on artificial intelligence coincides with the meeting of global business and political leaders at the World Economic Forum in Davos, Switzerland, where AI is a topic of discussion.


Companies have been throwing cash at emerging technology, sometimes sparking concern among employees about the future of their roles. One example is Buzzfeed Inc., which announced plans to use AI to help with content creation and closed its core news department, laying off more than 100 staffers.


The European Union reached a tentative deal in December on legislation setting out safeguards on AI, while the US is still weighing its federal regulatory stance.


“In most scenarios, AI will likely worsen overall inequality, a troubling trend that policymakers must proactively address to prevent the technology from further stoking social tensions,” Georgieva said in a blog post on the study.


More productivity from high-income workers and companies would boost capital returns, widening the wealth gap, Georgieva said. Countries should provide “comprehensive social safety nets” and retraining programs for vulnerable workers, she said.


She noted that while there’s potential for AI to fully replace some jobs, the more likely scenario is that it’ll complement human work, according to the analysis.


Georgieva said advanced economies may have about 60% of jobs affected, more than emerging and low-income countries.

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