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Singapore leads APAC in AI maturity

Singapore has been identified as a leader in AI maturity among markets surveyed in the Asia-Pacific region, according to the Asia-Pacific AI Maturity Study 2024 conducted by IDC and commissioned by Intel.

The study found that Singapore’s strategic position as a regional hub, coupled with its burgeoning artificial intelligence startup ecosystem, reputable academic institutions, and substantial government backing, helped propel the nation to the forefront of AI competitiveness and innovation in the region. 

Also, the study cited the banking, financial services, and insurance (BFSI) sector, alongside the retail industry, as key sectors driving AI adoption and spending in Singapore.

IDC forecasts that Singapore’s AI expenditure will see a robust CAGR of 25.3% from US$1.7 billion in 2023 to hit the US$4.2 billion mark by 2027.

For Singapore to harness the full potential of AI, the study highlighted the need to innovate faster given its small market size compared to others in the region, and the need to develop a market-leading approach to AI regulation.

AI is increasingly seen as a linchpin for enterprise growth, with its ability to enhance productivity, drive employee engagement, expedite product development, and streamline costs.

As part of the regional study, IDC has also forecast regional AI spending growth at a CAGR of 28.9% from $25.5 billion in 2022, to reach $90.7 billion by 2027.

Interestingly, the study highlights that, despite the hype around generative AI, a mere 19% of the region’s AI investments have been allocated to this. 

A dominant 81% has been channeled towards predictive and interpretative AI applications, underscoring the need for a holistic and integrated approach to AI beyond generative AI.

With a majority of APAC organisations planning increased edge IT spending in 2024, the study also highlights a rise in edge AI, projecting that by 2025, 75% of enterprise data will be generated and processed at the edge and outside of traditional data centers and the cloud.

“To truly bring AI everywhere, the technologies used must provide accessibility, flexibility, and transparency to individuals, industries, and society at large,” said Intel’s Alexis Crowell, VP and CTO at Intel Asia Pacific and Japan.

“As we witness increasing growth in AI investments, the next few years will be critical for markets to build out their AI maturity foundation in a responsible and thoughtful manner,” said Crowell.