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Artificial intelligence (AI) will impact several areas of banking and financial services, including know-your-customer (KYC) processes, personalised loan applications and portfolio risk assessments for private equity, fintech venture capitalist Spiros Margaris of Margaris Ventures said here on Saturday. Margaris is also a senior adviser to and board member of several US and Europe-based fintech firms.

He pointed out that India will see $60-65 billion in economic value added by data and AI by 2025, and that all financial institutions will have to put an effort into adopting generative AI. He cited the example of American financial services giant JP Morgan, which hired thousands of AI-focused workers such as researchers, machine learning engineers and data scientists last year.

While most big countries are attempting to regulate the frontier technology, they will not do so.

“We are all afraid of labour unrest, election manipulation, cybersecurity threats and that’s why all big countries will try to regulate AI but no one will regulate,” he said. “The strategy of successful governments is to tell them (industry leaders) that it (AI) is a kid… go play but don’t hurt yourself badly. No one in their right minds will regulate AI because if you regulate, you will fall back as a country.”

Notably, in December, European Union lawmakers passed the world’s first comprehensive set of AI regulations, set to be effective from 2025. The Indian government has, however, indicated that it will only take a light-touch approach to regulating AI to allow sufficient room for growth and innovation.

As for the impact of AI on jobs, he said, “We are not here to compete with machines… we can only use machines to get better.”

The impact of AI will be greater on certain kinds of roles.

“Nearly all… almost 96% of board members today talk about AI. I remember talking to a CEO of a big bank half a year ago… AI was not as much on his agenda. AI will have an impact on jobs… it will have more of an impact on high-paying jobs than on a plumber or a carpenter,” he said. “I still believe we can use AI in order to enhance our skills but it’s not going to be easy. A lot of jobs such as those of bankers, etc., will face (the question) should I take the advice of generative AI or should I go with my instinct.”

ET had reported earlier that some Indian companies were attributing job losses to AI. Fintech firm Paytm had laid off around 1,000 workers in December from its operations, sales and engineering teams on account of what it said was “AI-powered automation” and aimed to reduce 10-15% in employee costs.

  • Published On Feb 11, 2024 at 11:28 AM IST

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