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May 26, 2019

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Shanghai’s new role as a leading AI center

Shanghai has been designated the new national pilot zone to develop artificial intelligence technology — the country’s second such zone after Beijing.

The Shanghai National Pilot Area for AI Innovation and Development is the latest step toward the country’s goal to become a global AI powerhouse.

The new science and technology revolution, led by AI, is having significant and far-reaching influence on global economic development, social progress and civilization, said Li Meng, vice minister of the Ministry of Science and Technology, at the ongoing Pujiang Innovation Forum.

China is making a priority of the healthy development of AI, said Li.

Under China’s 2017 plan for AI development, it will be a major economic growth engine and help improve people’s lives by 2020.

China hopes to become a major hub for AI innovation and plays a leading global role in the development and application of AI technology by 2030.

The two pioneer national AI pilot zones will explore how to develop high-quality AI with the potential to be copied across the country. By the end of next year, the country is set to have about 10 such zones, Li said.

Shanghai is perfect for the project. It’s rich in scientific resources and facilities. Also, Shanghai leads the country as a pioneer in new approaches and policies, Li told the forum.

Shanghai’s citywide program will focus on using AI in healthcare, transportation, community management, finance and manufacturing, Gan Pin, deputy director of the Shanghai Science and Technology Commission, told Shanghai Daily.

Shared information is a key to the future, and the foundation of developing AI, Gan said.

Gan sees that soon everyone will have a life-long electronic health certificate featuring all health conditions. Driverless vehicles and machine learning will also feature.

The city will also create an ecosystem and world-class AI platforms in pursuit of the integrated development of the Yangtze River Delta region, including ethical regulations and a high-end AI think tank.

AI, biomedicine and integrated circuits are three key industries supporting the city’s development.

And the new Shanghai pilot zone hopes to gather high-end resources from across the globe and support the city’s goal to become an innovation center with global influence.

Shanghai has great science facilities to facilitate fundamental research, platforms to help turn ideas into products, and a cluster of innovators and entrepreneurs which, according to Gan, form the foundation of a global innovation center.


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