Alessio Butti, Italy's cabinet undersecretary who is in charge of technical innovation, issued the announcement of the state-backed fund by the end of May 2023, according to Corriere Communazione. While he did not disclose detailed information on the sum to be made available, sources from the government later told Reuters news agency that the figure being considered in Rome was in the range of €150 million.
“Our goal is to increase the independence of Italian industry and cultivate our national capacity to develop skills and research in the sector,” Butti said. “This is why we are working with CDP on the creation of an investment fund for the most innovative startups, so that study, research, and programming on AI can be promoted in Italy.”
Italy is the latest government to seek ways to accelerate domestic AI ecosystem development. The Italian government will "soon" create a €150 million fund for stimulating entrepreneurs in the AI sector as part of the country's Strategic Program for Artificial Intelligence, funded by development bank Cassa Depositi e Prestiti (CDP).
As a result of the recent AI hype, Nvidia has become the very first chipmaker to reach a $1 trillion valuation last week. Stocks jumped after the business predicted revenues of $11 billion in the second quarter as a result of its processors powering OpenAI's ChatGPT.
Those who have not yet gotten a piece of the generative AI pie are now racing to be a participant of the algorithm-driven gold rush of the twenty-first century.
Italy is considering forming its own "ad hoc" task force. Butti explained, “In Italy we must update the strategy of the sector, and therefore the Department for Digital Transformation is working on the establishment of an authoritative group of Italian experts and scholars.”
In 2021, Italy established the Strategic Program for Artificial Intelligence 2022-2024, however the sector is expanding at lightning-fast speed. The strategy is a collaborative effort of the ministries of higher education and research, economic development, technical innovation, and digital transformation. It is also led by a committee that works on the national AI strategy.
The program contains 24 initiatives that the administration will execute during the next three years. Aside from steps to boost domestic AI development, they include STEM subject promotion and raising the number of doctorates in order to draw foreign researchers. Furthermore, they want to provide data infrastructure for public administration as well as specific assistance for innovators working in GovTech and focused on addressing crucial public-sector challenges.