The EU’s AI regulations sparked a letter signed by 160 tech execs

Tech Executives Urge Caution in EU AI Regulations

In an open letter to lawmakers in the European Union, more than 160 executives from tech companies worldwide implored them to exercise caution when formulating regulations concerning artificial intelligence (AI) so as to not impede the industry or markets.

Executives from firms including Renault, Meta, Cellnex (a Spanish telecom provider), and Berenberg (a German investment bank) expressed concern on June 30th that the EU AI Act may impair the region’s competitiveness and innovation.

The warning specifically stated that regulations proposed by the European Union would lead to stringent control of generative AI tools, creating both liability issues and expensive compliance costs for the firms building the technology.

Two weeks before the letter, on June 14th, the European Parliament passed the first EU AI Act, which includes laws that would require systems such as ChatGPT to reveal all content generated by AI and other steps against illegal content.

Furthermore, the current regulations aim to disallow the utilization of certain AI services and products. Utter prohibitions were instituted on technologies including the public application of biometric surveillance, social scoring systems, predictive policing, so-called “emotion recognition” and indiscriminate facial recognition systems.

The US is contemplating the possibility of strengthening limitations on the export of AI chips.

Proposed Regulations and Collaborative Efforts to Establish Rules

Before the bill is officially put into effect, discussions between members of parliament will occur to settle the specifics of the EU AI Act. This correspondence comes as tech firms still have the opportunity to appeal to legislators for more moderate regulations.

The president of Microsoft visited Europe the day prior to the release of the letter, discussing with regulators the most suitable way to regulate AI.

In May, Sam Altman, CEO of OpenAI, visited Brussels to meet with European regulators. He cautioned them about the potentially damaging consequences of excessive regulation on the AI industry.

The head of technology for the European Union has gone on the record advocating for the EU and America to collaborate in the formation of a voluntary “AI code of conduct” that can be implemented until legislators establish more permanent rules.

In March, a further open letter was released by more than 2,600 tech industry heads and scholars, including Elon Musk, which called for a short-term suspension of any additional progress in AI and the establishment of regulations.

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