26 Apr, 2021

Vestager: With new rules on AI, the EU spearheads development of global norms

On 21 April, the European Commission unveiled a package of rules on Artificial Intelligence, entitled ‘A European approach for Artificial Intelligence’, aimed at addressing the risks of the new technology while positioning Europe as a global leader in the sector.

The initiative, overseen by European Commission Executive Vice-President Margrethe Vestager and supported by Commissioner Thierry Breton, expands on the strategy to shape Europe’s digital future presented in February 2020 and includes the following elements:

  • The first-ever legal framework on AI: rules founded upon on a risk-based approach (from minimal risk systems such as spam filters or AI-enabled video games to unacceptable risks such as systems that manipulate human behaviours) to ensure that all AI applications are used in a safe way. The creation of a European Artificial Intelligence Board is foreseen to facilitate the implementation.
  • A coordinated plan with the EU Member States: a series of actions and funding instruments to accelerate the investments in AI to drive an economic, green and social recovery and to build strategic leadership as well as to ensure that it works for people.
  • New rules on machinery products: adaptation of safety rules to increase users’ trust in the new generation of AI products and services, such as robots and construction machines.

If you want to learn more about the new AI rules, watch this explanatory video from Executive Vice-President Vestager.

“With these landmark rules, the EU is spearheading the development of new global norms to make sure AI can be trusted. By setting the standards, we can pave the way to ethical technology worldwide and ensure that the EU remains competitive along the way. Future-proof and innovation-friendly, our rules will intervene where strictly needed: when the safety and fundamental rights of EU citizens are at stake”, Vestager said in the presentation of the proposal.

Artificial Intelligence is already part of our daily lives, from healthcare to home assistants. ALDE Party and its members will continue working to foster the innovation and development of AI technologies to the best benefit of society while mitigating the risks that its uses might entail. We believe that respect for EU fundamental values including equal opportunity and the protection of privacy for all citizens, as well as a human-centric approach to AI are needed to face the digital transformation.

Ahead of the proposal’s release, our liberal lawmakers shared how they see Artificial Intelligence and its regulatory principles.

Photo credit: Aurore Matignoni, EC - Audiovisual Service 2021.

Photo credit: Aurore Matignoni, EC - Audiovisual Service 2021

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