News Report Technology
December 01, 2023

European Union Struggles to Agree on Generative AI Regulations Ahead of Planned Legislation

European Union Struggles to Reach Consensus on Generative AI Regulations Before Planned Legislation

European Union lawmakers are facing challenges in reaching a consensus on the regulation of ‘foundation models,’ or generative artificial intelligence (AI), threatening the launch of legislation aimed at regulating AI in the region.

The scheduled negotiation for the final decision, where countries are expected to come to an agreement — is set for Dec. 6. If an agreement is not reached on that date, the act risks being postponed due to the limited time before the European parliamentary elections next year.

Divergent views exist among experts and lawmakers, with some proposing a tiered approach for regulating foundation models with more than 45 million users. However, others argue that smaller models could pose similar risks.

The primary challenge to reaching an agreement comes from France, Germany and Italy, who advocate for allowing makers of generative AI models to self-regulate rather than imposing strict rules. Despite smooth negotiations on various other aspects of regulating high-risk AI, the disagreement on the approach to foundation models remains a significant hurdle.

Earlier this year, the European Parliament approved the European Union AI Act after two years of negotiations. The draft AI rules now require agreement through discussions between representatives of the European Parliament, the Council, and the European Commission.

Global Nations Explore Self-Regulation Protocols for AI

However, concerns have been raised about potential self-regulation, with European parliamentarians and numerous AI researchers criticizing the approach. In an open letter, researchers warned that self-regulation is expected to significantly deviate from the standards necessary for ensuring the safety of foundation models.

France-based AI company Mistral and Germany’s Aleph Alpha have opposed the tiered approach to regulating foundation models, gaining support from their respective countries.

Several unresolved issues in the talks include the definition of AI, fundamental rights impact assessment, law enforcement exceptions, and national security exceptions. Lawmakers also remain divided over the use of AI systems by law enforcement agencies for biometric identification in publicly accessible spaces, with no consensus reached in previous meetings on these topics.

As European Union lawmakers navigate through varying perspectives and challenges in regulating generative AI, the possible postponement of legislation raises concerns. The uncertainty surrounding potential self-regulation, as voiced by parliamentarians and AI researchers, coupled with numerous unresolved issues in discussions, leaves the fate of the European Union AI Act undetermined.

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About The Author

Alisa is a reporter for the Metaverse Post. She focuses on investments, AI, metaverse, and everything related to Web3. Alisa has a degree in Business of Art and expertise in Art & Tech. She has developed her passion for journalism through writing for VCs, notable crypto projects, and scientific writing. You can contact her at [email protected]

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Alisa Davidson
Alisa Davidson

Alisa is a reporter for the Metaverse Post. She focuses on investments, AI, metaverse, and everything related to Web3. Alisa has a degree in Business of Art and expertise in Art & Tech. She has developed her passion for journalism through writing for VCs, notable crypto projects, and scientific writing. You can contact her at [email protected]

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