President Yoon Suk Yeol said the artificial intelligence sector should be advanced but global regulations are needed to prevent side effects.
Yoon made the remark while meeting with Sam Altman, CEO of OpenAI, the creator of ChatGPT, at his office in Seoul on Friday.
Presidential spokesperson Lee Do-woon said that during the hour-long meeting, the two discussed the direction of AI development, potential risks and solutions, international regulations and cooperation between OpenAI and South Korean startups.
In the talks, Yoon asked Altman what area Korea should focus on as a strategy of concentration as one country can't be the best in everything, and the CEO replied "semiconductors."
Altman said that in the AI era, demand for memory chips will sharply rise due to the massive data volume needed and that his company, which is currently using chips from Taiwan, will also need Korean chips to meet the demand and this is why many countries are eager to cooperate with Korea.
Yoon also said that as technology advances so fast, global standards to prevent side effects related to ChatGPT should be swiftly drafted. Altman agreed on the need to reduce risks and asked for Korea to play a leading role.
He also said that Korean AI startups are perfectly competitive on the global stage and that OpenAI is exploring to invest more in them.
When asked for a message to South Korea, Altman suggested the country expand production capacity on system semiconductors, reduce regulations on AI products and services, and actively participate in setting up international standards.