The US company behind ChatGPT has said its first international office will be based in London.

OpenAI chief executive Sam Altman said the move was an “opportunity to attract world-class talent”.

It comes after he criticised the EU’s proposed legislation regulating artificial intelligence (AI), which would require companies to reveal the content used to train their systems.

The UK meanwhile is planning what it calls “pro-innovation” regulation.

“We are thrilled to extend our research and development footprint into London, a city globally renowned for its rich culture and exceptional talent pool,” said Diane Yoon, OpenAI VP of People.”We are eager to build dynamic teams in research [and] engineering… to reinforce our efforts in creating and promoting safe AI.”

When ChatGPT burst onto the scene last November, the chatbot’s ability to give human-sounding answers to questions kickstarted intense global interest in the latest AI-powered products.

It also sparked a debate about what threats AI potentially poses – and what regulation is needed to mitigate those risks.

At an event at University College London in May, Mr Altman said he believed AI could create jobs and reduce inequality.

Prime Minister Rishi Sunak said at the event that AI could “positively transform humanity” and “deliver better outcomes for the British public, with emerging opportunities in a range of areas to improve public services”.

ChatGPT has proven controversial, being briefly banned in Italy before it was restored in April 2023.

The UK government said it has invested £2.5bn in AI since 2014.

Speaking about the news, Chloe Smith, the Science, Innovation and Technology Secretary, said: “OpenAI’s decision to expand into London as their first international office is another vote of confidence for Britain as an AI powerhouse and, in OpenAI’s own words, for our vibrant technology ecosystem and exceptional talent.

“Our AI sector already employs more than 50,000 people across the country, and we will continue to foster an approach which unlocks opportunity and cements our place as a global destination for artificial intelligence.”


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