The EU’s landmark AI law is getting closer to reality as a competing set of rules forms across the English Channel.
The union intends to agree on draft rules for the world’s first AI statute next monthReuters reported on Monday.
“We are still well on track to meet the overall goal and timeline that we envisioned from the very beginning, which was completion during this mandate,” Dragos Tudorache, MEP and co-rapporteur on the EU AI law, told the news agency.
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While EU legislation is about to be passed, UK lawmakers are taking a very different approach. Her priorities are stimulating business, providing a competitive advantage and supporting responsible innovation.
The vision was first set out in a strategy paper last July. In the document, the government said it plans to do so Building the “most innovation-friendly regulatory environment in the world”.
“Proportionate, gentle and forward-looking regulation is essential.
Ministers noted that the UK ranked third in the world for the number of citations in academic journals and received more investment in AI companies in 2021 than France and Germany combined. The new regulation Environment, they hope, will further boost business adoption of AI, attract international investment, and nurture talent.
“A proportionate, relaxed and forward-looking regulatory framework is essential to keep up with the pace of developments in these technologies,” said then-Digital Secretary Nadine Dorries.
The British government in particular has publicly criticized the EU’s AI regulation. A press release in December, which hailed the UK’s tech sector’s position as the most valuable in Europe, praised the country’s “less centralized approach”.
This approach leaves regulation to the existing organizations – like Ofcom, which regulates broadcasting – rather than a single overarching body. This allows rules to be tailored to different sectors and changed over time. However, this flexibility comes with certain risks.
Critics fear the sectoral focus will cause some areas to fall through the gaps. There are also concerns about potentially conflicting regulations and existing regulators overseeing AI without sufficient expertise.
There are currently no plans to back the plan with new legislation. Instead, regulators will be guided by core principles such as security, transparency and fairness. This could reduce tedious commitments, but critics warn it will increase AI risks.
“It is clear that they are looking for comparable strength.
The suggestions for “lighter” options, on the other hand These include guidance, voluntary actions, and creating sandboxes. The government hopes this will attract companies to the UK.
“It’s clear from the government’s tone and pronouncements that they are looking for comparable strength in AI – and the EU is the closest match, by geography and market,” Joe Jones, Director of Research and Insights at the International Association by privacy professionals, TNW said.
EU legislation takes a broader approach. A new body, the European AI Board, will oversee the framework, with member states free to create their own enforcement bodies.
The use of AI is divided into different risk levels. Systems with the highest risk could be banned, while less risky systems would have minimum requirements.
As with the GDPR, breaches of the rules could result in high penalties. Violations would be punished with fines of up to 30 million euros or 6% of global sales.
Further changes are to be expected. The EU’s AI law has yet to work its way through a lengthy legislative process, while the UK’s white paper on the rules is delayed.
Ultimately, both regulators are looking for the elusive balance sought by all technology laws: reducing risk without stifling innovation. However, their priorities have diverged.
The EU has placed great importance on security, while the UK has emphasized the business case. Their decisions could shape the continent’s AI landscape for years to come.
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