Chinese AI Investment in Hungary: An Assessment

The latest analysis by Danube Institute Researchers Logan West, Matthew McCracken, Eric Hendriks, and Wael Taji

The realization of artificial intelligence research and development in Hungary by Chinese entities has raised concerns about potential intentions and capabilities that could materialize in the future. An issue that results from acting on such concerns is that they originate from a position of theoretical danger rather than a substantiated history of hostile actions due to AI’s advent being so recent. The ongoing development of both the capabilities of AI and an understanding of those capabilities as well as the opaque nature of Chinese politics provide additional layers of ambiguity which highly complicate efforts to determine what dangers exist and their likelihood for occurring. In the context of Hungary, such questions are pertinent due to the development of AI-augmented state-level infrastructure and large commercial assets. In addition, Hungary’s international security and economic relations are also concerned due to perceptions that Hungary is not positioned to address such issues. The objective of this report is to detail what assets exist in Hungary that make use of artificial intelligence, what malicious capabilities artificial intelligence may have that apply to such assets, and under what circumstances Chinese actors would pursue their utilization. Finally, general recommendations are proposed with a goal to ensure Hungary’s security relations with other nations remain assured, whilst not unduly damaging its commercial relations with China.

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