Elon Musk made a trip to China in May. Alain Jocard/Getty Images
Elon Musk made a trip to China in May. 
July 13 2023
  • Elon Musk's warning for China: superintelligent AI could take control of the country.
  • The billionaire said he told senior leaders about the potential threat during a recent China trip.
  • It comes as Musk makes his own foray into the AI field with a new company.

During a Twitter Spaces call on Wednesday, the Twitter owner said he spent "a fair bit of time with senior leadership" in China following a trip in May. He said he discussed the potential dangers of AI and the potential of the technology to claim power. 

"I think that did resonate," Musk said during the call. "No government wants to find itself unseated by a digital superintelligence."

The Spaces call on the "future of AI" came as the billionaire unveiled xAI, his new company that aims to rival OpenAI and other tech companies while setting out to "understand the true nature of the universe."

"I think trying to understand the universe is going to be pro-humanity, from the standpoint that humanity is just much more interesting than not humanity," he said during the call, which took place alongside Congressmen Ro Khanna and Mike Gallagher.

Musk has raised several alarms about the potential dangers of AI becoming a kind of "superintelligence" with some capabilities that humans have. His concerns have grown increasingly louder since the launch of OpenAI's ChatGPT. 

On the call, he said if he could "press pause" on the advancement of AI, he would, but that it didn't seem realistic. 

During his trip to China, Musk was treated like royalty, meeting senior government officials and business leaders to discuss popular topics such as AI. 

Musk shared on the call that following his conversations with leaders in the country, there seemed to be interest in working on a "cooperative international framework" to regulate AI. He admitted there was a fair bit of distrust towards the US, however.

However, Gallagher expressed skepticism about China's willingness to control the pace at which their AI evolves and spoke of concerns about it potentially being used for total techno-totalitarian control.

Musk did not immediately respond to Insider's request for comment outside of regular working hours.