Equities

Malta's GO Plc Taps AI for 20% Marketing, 30% Code Amid Talent Shortage

Malta's GO Plc uses AI for 20% of marketing, 30% of code, and all legal contracts to address talent shortage.

By Athena Xu

5/24, 04:33 EDT
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Key Takeaway

  • GO Plc integrates AI to generate 20% of marketing content and 30% of code, addressing Malta's talent shortage.
  • Malta leverages AI in education, startups, and government initiatives to tackle challenges like climate change and skills gaps.
  • Prime Minister Abela renews AI efforts post-pandemic; updated strategy aligns with EU regulations focusing on job displacement and ethical deployment.

GO Plc's AI Integration

GO Plc, Malta's leading telecom provider, is increasingly integrating artificial intelligence (AI) into its operations. The company has adopted AI tools to generate approximately 20% of its marketing content and 30% of its code. Additionally, AI services are used to draft all legal contracts, which are subsequently reviewed by human professionals. GO's CEO, Nikhil Patil, emphasized the necessity of AI in addressing the talent shortage on the island, stating, "We are short of lawyers, accountants and coders. Only artificial intelligence can help us escape the talent curse."

Malta, known for its lax regulations in online gambling and its controversial golden visa program, is now positioning itself as a leader in AI technology. Businesses, schools, and the government are leveraging AI to tackle significant challenges such as climate change, attracting foreign investment, and bridging the skills gap. Prime Minister Robert Abela highlighted Malta's proactive stance on AI in a speech to the United Nations General Assembly, saying, "We can harness the power of AI for the public good, not fear it as a coming catastrophe."

AI in Education and Startups

The University of Malta is utilizing AI to preserve the Maltese language, monitor coastal waters with AI-powered drones, and adapt school curricula. Initiatives include creating "AI puppets" and "AI-powered stories" for younger students. Alexiei Dingli, a professor of artificial intelligence at the University of Malta, noted, "AI is playing a transformative role in addressing some of Malta's most pressing challenges such as education, traffic and health." Dingli, who is also an entrepreneur, has raised $1.4 million to use AI to alleviate the country's rush hour traffic issues.

Malta is home to over 50 AI startups, including Ebo, which develops virtual customer service agents, and SmartCow, which offers AI services for detecting accidents and traffic violations. The country previously attempted to establish itself as a "Blockchain Island" in 2018, but the initiative faced regulatory challenges. Despite setbacks, Malta's early adoption of AI, including a 2019 roadmap to become the "Ultimate AI Launchpad" by 2030, has given it a head start in the field.

Government and Corporate AI Strategies

The pandemic temporarily halted Malta's AI initiatives in healthcare, education, and finance. However, Prime Minister Abela has renewed efforts to integrate AI across various sectors. Dingli is currently revising Malta's AI strategy to align with the European Union's stricter AI regulations. The updated strategy will address job displacement, enhance AI literacy, and ensure ethical deployment of the technology. Dingli remarked, "Foresight in recognizing the importance of AI has given Malta a head start in the field of AI, and it continues to be a leader in the industry today."

GO Plc is also investing in the broader AI ecosystem. Go Ventures, a subsidiary of GO, recently invested $50,000 in ToumAI Analytics, a Morocco-based startup that uses AI to understand customer behavior in seven African languages. ToumAI's multilingual voice bots are now being used to improve customer service for GO's subscribers. Patil emphasized a cautious approach to further investments, stating, "We can't invest just because AI is a new cool thing."

Street Views

  • Alexiei Dingli, University of Malta (Bullish on AI in Malta):

    "AI is playing a transformative role in addressing some of Malta's most pressing challenges such as education, traffic and health."

Management Quotes

  • Nikhil Patil, CEO of GO:

    "We are short of lawyers, accountants and coders. Only artificial intelligence can help us escape the talent curse."

  • Robert Abela, Prime Minister of Malta:

    "We can harness the power of AI for the public good, not fear it as a coming catastrophe. In Malta we are already doing just that."

  • Alexiei Dingli, Professor at University of Malta:

    "Foresight in recognizing the importance of AI has given Malta a head start in the field of AI, and it continues to be a leader in the industry today."

  • Nikhil Patil, CEO of GO:

    "We can't invest just because AI is a new cool thing."