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The service sector is already a significant driver of economic output, growth, and employment in many APO member economies, although there is still plenty of room for improvement because repetitive, face-to-face service operations are especially vulnerable to replacement by AI. Boosting service-sector productivity requires addressing a wide range of policy distortions and investments in human capital. A World Economic Forum study in 2020 showed that 75 million jobs would be lost to automation by 2025, while 133 million new ones would be created by the introduction of Industry 4.0. This indicates that there are many opportunities for employees who are willing to learn new skills to remain relevant in the workforce. It is a valuable investment for companies to train existing employees to expand their capabilities. Hiring new staff with appropriate skills who cannot be replaced by technologies is also a key to successful human resources management.
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