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Vestager defends the AI Act

Vestager defends the AI Act

Commissioner tells the FT it strengthens innovation, research

ROME, 10 January 2024, 15:35

ANSA Editorial




European Commission Vice-President for the Digital Age and Commissioner for Competition Margrethe Vestager has defended the EU's AI Act in an interview with the Financial Times, arguing, on one hand, that "it won't harm innovation and research but will strengthen it" and, on the other, that it "creates predictability and legal certainty on the market".
    The European institutions have reached a political agreement on the AI Act, the first attempt in the world to regulate the sector, and this will have to be approved definitively by the Council and the European Parliament.
    French President Emmanuel Macron, however, has criticised the agreement because he says the new rules risk putting European tech companies behind those based in the United States and China.
    The British daily writes that Vestager has acknowledged that European technology firms have a disadvantage with respect to their US rivals in the development of AI, such as less access to venture capital.
    "The regulation in itself is not the only response," the Commission Vice-President said.
    "It creates market confidence. Then there are the investments and, naturally, you need people to start to use (the AI technology) because that is the only way to give shape to the technology".
    In the firing line of Paris, supported by Berlin and initially by Rome, were the rules on the so-called foundation models at the base of generative AI products such as ChatGPT in particular.
    "If foundation models are produced, and if one wants to apply foundation models, one will know precisely what will be searched for once the product is put into use," said Vestager, reiterating the importance of encouraging innovation without there being "a surplus of regulation".


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