Robots will double world economic growth within two decades

HUBO, a walking robot performs a demonstration of its capacities at the technology themed Davos. (Reuters)
Updated 11 November 2017
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Robots will double world economic growth within two decades

DUBAI: Artificial intelligence and machines will double the growth of economies around the world by 2035, according to Mohammad Abdullah Al Gergawi, the United Arab Emirates’ Minister of Cabinet Affairs and the Future.
Speaking at the World Economic Forum’s annual meeting of Global Future Councils in Dubai, Al Gergawi also told participants that the the so-called Internet of Things, through which objects from street-lights to cars communicate and share data, would contribute $10-15 trillion dollars to the global economy in the next 20 years.
While Al Gergawi said that the capacity of the global workforce will increase by 40% in the coming two decades as more jobs become mechanized, he stressed that it was necessary to discuss, plan and strategies how the sweeping technology would affect humanity.
“The future is a global and moral shared responsibility,” he said.


India decides not to immediately revive Air India sale plan — Bloomberg

Updated 6 min ago
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India decides not to immediately revive Air India sale plan — Bloomberg

New Delhi: India has virtually abandoned a plan to sell its ailing state carrier Air India after failing to attract buyers, Bloomberg reported on Tuesday, citing people familiar with the matter.
The Indian government plans to focus on improving the carrier’s operations and selling its building in Mumbai, ground handling and aircraft maintenance units, according to the report https://bloom.bg/2M5jobm.
The decision is a highly disappointing reversal of the government’s earlier commitment to privatizating the national carrier, consultancy CAPA India said.
“Under continued government ownership, with no clear roadmap, Air India is likely to see its domestic and international market shares decline over time to a point where the carrier is no longer relevant,” it said.
“In the meantime, losses will continue (estimated at USD1.5-2.0 billion over the next two years alone), representing an unnecessary drain on tax payer funds, to subsidise a government business in an industry which is well-served by private operators,” it added.
The government in March finalized plans to divest a majority stake in Air India and offload about $5.1 billion of its debt, but prospective buyers stayed away, with some citing onerous terms as a reason for their lack of interest.
Air India and the Indian government could not be reached for comment outside business hours.
The state-run carrier said this month it was seeking a short-term loan of 10 billion rupees ($148 million) so it can continue day-to-day operations, underscoring its dire financial straits.