US and China back UK deal to collaborate over potentially 'catastrophic' threats posed by AI

US and China back UK deal to collaborate over potentially 'catastrophic' threats posed by AI

The US and China have endorsed a joint declaration on the need to manage the potentially “catastrophic” risks posed by Artificial Intelligence.

The world’s leading AI powers were among 28 nations to agree to the UK’s Bletchley Declaration, which stresses the need for countries to work together on the powerful technology.

It was published on the first day of a world-first AI safety summit, organized by Rishi Sunak, which kicked off with a video message from the King.

The deal gets its name from host site Bletchley Park, which was home to Britain’s Second World War codebreakers.

The government says the agreement fulfills key objectives of the safety summit, ensuring potential AI threats are managed “collectively” and the tech is “developed and deployed in a safe, responsible way”.

The US and China’s involvement is seen as crucial given their status in the field, with many of the world’s leading developers – including ChatGPT maker OpenAI and Beijing tech giant Baidu – falling under their jurisdiction.

Mr Sunak ignored criticism from within his own party and campaigners to invite China to the event.

Stop Uyghur Genocide’s Rahima Mahmut said the technology was used by Beijing as a tool of “repression”.

China has been accused of interning one million Uyghurs in “re-education” centres in Xinjiang, and MPs have declared they and other minorities in the province were being subjected to genocide.

Other countries giving their backing to the declaration include France, Japan, South Korea, and Saudi Arabia.

The declaration references potentially “catastrophic” risks around cybersecurity, biotechnology, and misinformation, plus concerns like bias and privacy.

Such risks are “best addressed through international cooperation”, it says.