Nearly four million jobs in South Korea are at risk of being replaced by artificial intelligence technology over the next two decades, according to a central bank study released on Thursday.
Rapidly evolving artificial intelligence technology has sparked global concern about everything from job losses and cyberattacks to people losing control over the systems they design.
A new study by the Bank of Korea shows that around 3.9 million jobs in South Korea are at risk as the spread of artificial intelligence in the country grows, with doctors, lawyers, accountants and chemists among the most at-risk professions.
“High-income and academically educated workers are more exposed to AI and are at greater risk of being replaced,” the study said.
White-collar jobs were most at risk because artificial intelligence can easily perform analytical and cognitive tasks, he added.
The study found that those least likely to lose their jobs due to technological advances are those working in the fields of religion, food services and teaching.
The Bank of Korea report noted that while AI technology poses a threat to existing jobs, it also creates new employment opportunities, including for engineers who develop and maintain AI systems, as well as in AI startups.
However, because the new positions are “concentrated” in one particular field, “some employees may experience difficulties in the job transition process caused by the introduction of artificial intelligence,” he added.
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