The Netherlands wants to be Europe’s artificial intelligence (AI) hotspot, with the government pledging over $230 million to boost the development, training, and adoption of the technology.

The Dutch Ministry of Digitalisation unveiled a four-pillared vision for the European country, led by a push to make the technology safe, fair, and ethical. It’s anchored in enabling regulations, with the government declaring it will start adhering to the EU’s AI Act immediately.

Generative AI in the Netherlands will be guided by four pillars: safety, fairness and equitability, the service of human well-being, and sustainability.

In line with the vision, the government pledged to conduct awareness and training on how best to leverage AI tools and protect data, which is the lifeblood of the technology. It also called on the Social and Economic Council to outline AI’s impact on productivity and the quality of work.

The replacement of human input by AI has been a consistent fear globally since ChatGPT
brought the technology to life. Goldman Sachs (NASDAQ: GS) has estimated that around 300 million jobs will be lost to AI in the long run. However, in reality, the numbers are more measured; for instance, AI only eliminated 4,000 jobs in the U.S. last May, according to one report.

Nevertheless, more governments are taking measures to train their populace to adapt to AI and leverage it to stay productive. Last year, Italy set aside $33 million to train citizens on AI.

This threat is twofold for the Netherlands and Europe in general—first, its people could lose their jobs en masse. However, an even more significant long-term threat is that these jobs will flow to Asia and the U.S. as Europe has fallen behind the two regions in AI tech development.

Dutch Digitalisation Minister Alexandra van Huffelen acknowledged the threat, stating, “We wish to retain the values and prosperity of the Netherlands…We are unwilling to leave the future socioeconomic security of the Netherlands exclusively in the hands of major tech companies.”

She added, “What is also needed is a government that has ambition and vision based on public values and our objectives: ensuring that everyone can participate in the digital era, everyone can be confident in the digital world and everyone has control over their digital life.”

To preserve its position, the Netherlands will invest €204.5 million ($221 million) in AiNed, a coalition of public and private entities in the Dutch tech space, to further its AI initiatives. It will invest a further €13.5 million ($14.7) in GPT-NL, an open language model developed for Dutch users.

Reuters further reports that the country has pledged to implement the EU’s AI Act
immediately. The framework has yet to be finalized as member states work out the kinks.

In order for artificial intelligence (AI) to work right within the law and thrive in the face of growing challenges, it needs to integrate an enterprise blockchain system that ensures data input quality and ownership—allowing it to keep data safe while also guaranteeing the immutability of data. Check out CoinGeek’s coverage on this emerging tech to learn more why Enterprise blockchain will be the backbone of AI.

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