On November 1, Nigeria joined 28 other countries around the world to sign the Bletchley Declaration, which is the first agreement of its kind to establish a shared understanding of the opportunities and risks posed by frontier AI, as well as the need for governments to collaborate to address the most significant challenges. The agreement was signed at Bletchley Park in the UK, where leading AI nations convened for the first time at the AI Summit to discuss concerns surrounding technology. The 29 countries, including the US, UK, China, Australia, Brazil, India, and the European Union, have mutually agreed that even though AI has the potential to transform and enhance human well-being, peace, and prosperity, it also poses significant risks, including those domains of daily life.
At the event, the Nigerian Minister of Communications and Digital Economy, Dr. Bosun Tijani, expressed Nigeria’s interest in exploring and using AI for the good of humanity. As a nation of innovators and entrepreneurs, Nigeria recognizes the significance of Artificial Intelligence and the urgent need to explore and use it for the good of humanity. Nigeria was also thankful to the UK Government for inviting them to be part of the UK AI for Development Programme, which will support their efforts to improve AI research and inclusive datasets.
The signatories, 28 countries from Africa, the Middle East, and Asia, as well as the EU, agreed on the urgent need to understand and collectively manage potential risks through a new joint global effort to ensure AI is developed and deployed safely and responsibly for the benefit of the global community. The Declaration fulfills key summit objectives in establishing shared agreement and responsibility on the risks, opportunities, and a forward process for international collaboration on frontier AI safety and research, particularly through greater scientific collaboration.
The countries agreed that substantial risks may arise from potential intentional misuse or unintended issues of control of frontier AI, with particular concern caused by cybersecurity, biotechnology, and misinformation risks. Attendees recognized the need to deepen the understanding of risks and capabilities that are not fully understood and agreed to work together to support a network of scientific research on Frontier AI safety. This builds on the UK Prime Minister’s announcement last week for the UK to establish the world’s first AI Safety Institute and complements existing international efforts, including at the G7, OECD, Council of Europe, United Nations, and the Global Partnership on AI.
The agreement ensures the best available scientific research can be used to create an evidence base for managing the risks while unlocking the benefits of the technology, including through the UK’s AI Safety Institute. This is a landmark achievement that sees the world’s greatest AI powers agree on the urgency behind understanding the risks of AI, helping ensure the long-term future of our children and grandchildren.