US needs Japan and South Korea to counter China tech
China’s capabilities in artificial intelligence and quantum computing are much closer to catching up to the US than the world has ever expected. This was put forward by Eric Schmidt, chairman of the US National Security Commission on Artificial Intelligence (NSCAI) and former CEO of Google.
Cold war or fellowship?
According to him, in order to win the tech race, the United States must hold the lead in five strategic areas: artificial intelligence (AI), semiconductors development, energy sector, quantum computing (QC) and synthetic biology.
“We need much closer relationships with Japanese researchers, Japanese universities, Japanese government — the same thing for South Koreans and same thing for Europeans,” he said.
Schmidt proposed to create a steering group in Washington and find reliable partners in Tokyo to maintain close communication with Japan, along with establishing similar bilateral arrangements with other allies. He stressed, though, that relations between the US and China should not be solely competitive.
There is a simple belief that “China is our enemy and we should stop trading with them and stop working with them, and I hear that,” said Schmidt. However, according to him, this mindset is a huge mistake. Schmidt described the relations between the countries as a “competitive partnership”, underscoring health care and climate change as areas of potential cooperation.
“It is a rivalry, but we also do in fact partner with them on many things,” he said. In July, the US Department of Commerce imposed sanctions against Chinese AI companies for violating the rights of Uighurs. In March, China unveiled a five-year economic plan which initiates the country’s boosted scientific research in the areas of artificial intelligence, quantum computing, semiconductors and space.
Before that, the US National Security Commission on Artificial Intelligence had published a report with recommendations on maintaining America’s technological dominance. China was called the only country to possibly undermine the technological superiority of the United States since the end of World War II.
In 2020, China became the world’s leader in scientific publications in the field of AI.
The former CEO of Google, Eric Schmidt, has expressed concerns regarding China’s tech sectors increasing pace of development able to compete with the one in the US. He has come up with a proposal to ally with Japan and South Korea to make America great again. However, Schmidt doesn’t call for cut-throat competition, but rather for a “competitive partnership” with China.
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