AI is likely to increase overall inequality in the global job space with a higher impact in the advanced economies than in low-income nations.
The International Monetary Fund (IMF) has warned that soon, the deployment of AI technology across companies will threaten about 40% of global jobs.
The IMF Managing Director, Kristalina Georgieva in a blog post expressed concern that AI is likely to increase overall inequality in the global job space with a higher impact in the advanced economies than in low-income nations.
“Almost 40 percent of global employment is exposed to AI. Historically, automation and information technology have tended to affect routine tasks, but one of the things that sets AI apart is its ability to impact high-skilled jobs. As a result, advanced economies face greater risks from AI—but also more opportunities to leverage its benefits—compared with emerging market and developing economies.” the report stated.
The report further hinted that AI exposure in emerging markets and low-income countries is expected to be 40% and 26% respectively, a lower figure compared to the 60% impact in advanced economies, suggesting that the impact of AI disruption will be less felt in emerging markets and developing economies.
Georgieva’s concerns seem to corroborate warnings by stakeholders who have predicted a high dependence on AI technology by companies while calling for strict regulation of the AI space.
A survey of CEOs conducted by PwC during the annual meeting of the World Economic Forum in Davos, Switzerland, revealed that a quarter intend to cut their headcounts by at least 5% “due to generative AI.”
The survey, however, predicted that CEOs who have keyed into adopted generative AI across their company (about one-third of the sample) are “significantly more likely than others to anticipate its transformative potential over the next 12 months, as well as over the next three years.”
The IMF report further harped on the need for advanced economies to prioritise AI innovation and integration while developing robust regulatory frameworks. Emerging markets and developing economies on the other hand have been advised to work towards laying a strong foundation through investments in digital infrastructure and a digitally competent workforce.
Georgieva noted that this approach will cultivate a safe and responsible AI environment and help maintain public trust.