Czechia helped pave the way for upcoming EU negotiations on AI regulation

The position adopted under the Czech EU presidency laid the groundwork for upcoming discussions over innovation and privacy. Staff

Written by Staff Published on 01.06.2023 10:14:00 (updated on 01.06.2023) Reading time: 1 minute

Branches of the European Union are approaching an agreement on regulating artificial intelligence between the members of the European Parliament and the EU member states.

The Act on Artificial Intelligence was pushed through the European Council late last year, when Czechia held the EU presidency. “Artificial intelligence is of paramount importance for our future,” Czech Deputy Prime Minister Ivan Bartoš, who was in charge of the member states' negotiations, said in December.

At that time, he said the European Council managed to achieve a delicate balance that will boost innovation and uptake of artificial intelligence technology across Europe. The law will preserve all the benefits of AI but ensure that the fundamental rights of citizens are fully respected, Bartoš said.

European Commission Vice-President for the Digital Agenda Margrethe Vestager said that the first three-way discussions between the European Parliament, the European Council, and the European Commission on the Artificial Intelligence Act could take place this summer.

“This would mean that if we work hard on it, we could have a result by the end of the year,” Vestager said. The European Union could become the first area in the world to have regulations as part of a legal framework for the safe development of artificial intelligence.

For example, the EU plans to introduce a ban on the use of artificial intelligence to create a person's “social credit,” a matter used by the Chinese regime to discriminate against people who are not in favor of the government. Similarly, a system of instantaneous biometric identification at a distance is to be banned, as it can lead to constant spying on people.

The current version of the act also includes provisions on transparency, so that people would have to be told when they are exposed to an emotion recognition system. Some provisions also make it easier for innovation and allow for real-world testing under some conditions and ease the regulatory burden for smaller companies. 

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