Closing Remarks by H.E. Park Jin
Minister of Foreign Affairs of the Republic of Korea
Responsible AI in the Military Domain Summit (REAIM)
February 16, 2023
My name is Park Jin,
Foreign Minister of the Republic of Korea.
I would like to extend my gratitude to the Netherlands
for their exceptional leadership
in organizing the REAIM Summit
and for their gracious hospitality.
The Hague - known as the
'International City of Peace and Justice’ –
provides the ideal setting for this important gathering.
More than 40 sessions were held yesterday
with an impressive number of people
from more than 80 countries
to discuss military applications of AI and its implications.
And I have the feeling
that all of us agree
that the impact of AI on our lives are so significant
that no country is free
from the current challenges that we face.
When I think of Artificial Intelligence(AI),
like many of you,
the movie Terminator comes to mind.
As you know, the film is about stopping
the rise of a dangerous AI system called Skynet
to safeguard the future of humanity.
It is a cautionary tale about the dangers of AI
and its potential unintended consequences
which many participants today pointed out.
The REAIM Summit
marks a significant step in raising global awareness
about these potential risks
and the importance of developing and using AI
Over the past two days,
we had productive discussions
with experts from diverse backgrounds
on the opportunities and challenges presented by AI.
With the wisdom gained from the conference,
we should proceed and act
to prevent wrong uses of AI in the military domain.
Because AI is evolving rapidly,
we must prepare and act before it is too late.
This is all the more important especially for Korea,
which is facing a real threat from North Korea
in terms of escalating weapons of mass destruction program,
including nuclear and missile threats.
The challenge of controlling the military application
of AI is different from what we did
in the past.
One major difference is that AI
is primarily about invisible software,
not visible hardware.
Another challenge is the potential tension
between those who already have AI technologies
and those who do not.
AI is closely tied to our daily lives and economy,
so there will be natural reservations
to any controlling mechanism that prevents latecomers
from developing their own AI technology.
Ladies and Gentlemen,
As a leading Asian nation in AI development,
Republic of Korea recognizes the significance
of pursuing meaningful dialogue on this topic.
This also aligns with the
Yoon Suk-yeol Government’s priority
to establish a digital order
that promotes freedom, solidarity, and human rights.
Therefore, Korea is committed to
securing political attention to the issue and
promoting international discussions.
We will prioritize facilitating dialogue
among relevant stakeholders - including governments,
the private sector, civil society, and academia.
In doing so, we will build on our experiences
from hosting the Conference on Cyberspace,
and the Nuclear Security Summit,
which we organized together with the Netherlands
and the United States.
To this end, we plan to delve into
the implications of AI on global peace and security
at the annual World Emerging Security Forum
hosted by Korea later this year.
And more importantly,
Korea is proud to announce that it will host
the 2nd REAIM Summit in Korea in cooperation with the Netherlands.
Let me close by saying
that the responsible military use of AI
is not just a technical matter, but a political one
that requires the attention and commitment of all of us.
Therefore, I would like to encourage our partners
to join us in supporting
the REAIM Summit’s Call to Action.
Korea also appreciates the efforts of the United States
to develop a political declaration
that promotes best practices.
We must continue to work together
to ensure this issue remains a priority
on our political agenda.
Once again, I would like to thank all of you
for your active engagement and contributions.
Thank you very much.