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Multifaceted Impact of Robots and AI: Key Insights from Dr Lili Yan Ing's Keynote Address at the 5th Eurasia Conference

16 May 2024

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Vienna, 16 May 2024: The adoption of industrial robots and AI, as evidenced by studies, yields substantial productivity gains at both the firm and aggregate levels. Industries embracing automation witness enhanced efficiency and cost-effectiveness, exemplified by the 49% productivity surge observed in automating firms in Indonesia, said Dr Lili Yan Ing, ERIA Senior Economist, in her keynote speech at the 5th Eurasia Conference, where she dissected the multifaceted impact of robots and AI on productivity, trade dynamics, and labour markets.

Moreover, Dr Ing discussed how the integration of Robots and AI catalyses shifts in global trade patterns, fostering increased exports from developing to developed countries. This trend is driven by the heightened competitiveness of firms leveraging automation, leading to a redistribution of market shares. She emphasised how this phenomenon not only augments trade in goods but also stimulates services trade, thereby amplifying consumer welfare on a global scale.

Dr Ing also addressed the complex implications for labour markets. While robots and AI may replace routine tasks, affecting unskilled labor, they simultaneously create demand for skilled workers through productivity improvements and task reallocation. She emphasised the need for a balanced view, recognising AI's potential to generate new employment opportunities while also highlighting the importance of safeguarding against negative impacts.

During the Q&A session, Dr Ing extolled the transformative potential of Robots and AI, urging stakeholders to embrace these technologies while exercising caution. She stressed the necessity of responsible governance to mitigate the risks associated with rapid AI advancement. Advocating for a human-centric approach, Dr Ing called for regulatory frameworks that prioritise ethical AI development and ensure alignment with societal values.

This event was also attended by Prof Michael Lloyd (Global Policy Institute), Prof Hercules Haralambides (Erasmus University), Prof Mike Beer (Harvard Business School), and other prominent speakers from all around the world.


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