SINGAPORE CITY, SINGAPORE — Singapore’s Deputy Prime Minister Lawrence Wong believes that artificial intelligence (AI) will not completely eliminate jobs despite its current disruption in the labor market.
During his speech at the Asia Tech x Singapore 2023 Summit, Wong acknowledged the transformative potential of AI in both blue and white-collar occupations.
However, he also insisted that humans and machines could coexist in the future, each performing tasks that best suit their capabilities.
“I do not believe we will end up with a jobless future, a dystopian jobless future where machines take over humans for everything and humans become upset because technology can replace some tasks,” he added.
The summit gathers government officials, executives from global companies, and consumers over four days to discuss the role of technology in the future.
Wong, who is also Singapore’s finance minister, said that the nature of blue and white-collar jobs will change with AI, noting that the “pace of change will accelerate, the scale of disruptions will increase with time.”
“It can also make us more productive in performing other tasks. And by doing so, it will create new tasks and new jobs,” he added.
And just like other tech and government leaders, Wong also advocates for comprehensive regulatory support, including job matching and skills development.
Singapore recently launched AI Verify, the world’s first testing toolkit, to help companies objectively assess and verify whether their AI products are responsible and meet international principles.
He concluded that the country would continue to work with the industry on pilot projects and drive the development of AI testing standards.