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South Korea To Invest $4.4 Billion In Blockchain and AI Technologies

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The South Korean government is spearheading investment in its country’s Artificial Intelligence (AI), Big Data, and Blockchain sectors to the tune of 5 trillion Won (U.S.$4.4 billion) starting in 2019.

The investment is expected to spur similar funding from South Korean private industry, and Kim Dong-yeon, the Finance Minister, indicated that an addition 10 trillion Won (U.S.$8.8 billion) could be invested in these high-technology sectors over the next five years.

“Up to 10 trillion won will be invested in such sectors as Big Data, AI and other key leading segments,” said Kim, quoted in a report in Yonhap.

The Ministry of Finance in Seoul said that the 5 trillion Won earmarked for 2019 represents a 65 per-cent increase over the amount allocated for 2018.

“The measures will help facilitate the platform economy, which in turn will help speed up innovative growth,” the Ministry of Finance said.

“The government will focus on promoting big data and AI, developing blockchain technology to ensure data management security and boosting the sharing economy,” the Ministry’s statement added.

The announced investments come soon after a recent announcement by the South Korean government that it is earmarking 60 billion Won (U.S.$53 million) for “nurturing” 10,000 South Korean specialists through grants and scholarships in leading technology sectors such as AI, biosciences, and data analytics.

Further, the South Korean governments also said that state-owned companies will also be investing in high-technology sectors such as AI, Big Data, and the Blockchain to the tune of 30 trillion Won (U.S.$26 billion) in the coming years.

Through these measures, the South Korean Ministry of Finance believes that up to 300,000 Korean jobs will be created by 2022.

Of the additional ten trillion Won that will be allocated over the next five years, 2.6 trillion Won (approximately U.S.$2.3 billion) will be used to create an investment fund for South Korean startups in these high technology sectors.

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