American multinational technology company Google logo seen at Googleplex, the corporate headquarters complex of Google and its parent company Alphabet Inc.
SINGAPORE — Singapore has “very high” potential as a global AI hub — thanks in part to an environment that fosters innovation, a Google Cloud executive told CNBC.
“In order for AI to really deliver on its potential, you need really good public and private partnerships,” Caroline Yap, managing director, global AI business and applied engineering at Google Cloud, told CNBC.
Yap was speaking on the sidelines of Explore AI summit in January, a meeting hosted by Google Cloud and the Singapore government to recognize the top generative AI solutions from organizations that took part in the “AI Trailblazers” initiative.
The initiative was first announced in July by Singapore’s Ministry of Communications and Information, Digital Industry Singapore, Smart Nation and Digital Government Office, and Google Cloud.
“… when you do have good public and private partnerships, you can really start to not just improve the public sector use cases like citizen services, but you can also foster an environment for innovation,” said Yap.
Singapore was one of the first countries with an AI game plan and in December, launched the National AI Strategy 2.0 — an updated version of its plans to expand the use of AI.
As part of the AI trailblazers initiative, two sandboxes were set up to provide as many as 100 organizations in the city-state with access to Google Cloud’s high-performance graphical processing units, Vertex AI platform, pre-trained generative AI models, and low-code developer tools. That enables to build and test their own generative AI solutions in a controlled and dedicated cloud-based environment.
Through the joint partnership, 43 organizations across government and industry sectors successfully built their own generative AI solutions utilizing Google’s AI stack.
At the same time, it also benefits Singaporeans as a whole, “either as consumers of these technologies or being in the economy as it grows for these types of innovation,” said Yap.
On whether other governments are as open and collaborative as Singapore, Yap told CNBC, “some are, some aren’t.” She did not elaborate on which countries they were.