The proposed EU Artificial Intelligence Act (AI Act) is currently being negotiated by EU institutions in Brussels as policymakers work to advance comprehensive legislation on artificial intelligence. However, time is running out with the European Parliament's elections approaching in June 2024 and a new European Commission. Despite the progress made during the recent trilogue negotiations, there are still more than 100 lines of text that still need to be agreed upon, and enforcement remains a significant sticking point. Kai Zenner, Head of Office and Digital Policy Advisor to German Member of European Parliament Axel Voss, who is deeply involved in the AI Act trilogue negotiations, revealed that there's only a 50-50 chance the text will be finalised in time.
However, ahead of the final trilogue negotiation on 6 December, EURACTIV reports that the European Parliament is close to reaching an agreement on the use of remote biometric identification (RBI) technologies in real-time, subject to certain narrow conditions as part of a package deal that extends the list of prohibited practices. RBI has been a significant point of contention in the negotiations, but the latest compromise text from the co-rapporteurs of the European Parliament's offices has dropped the complete ban on real-time RBI in exchange for concessions.
Meanwhile, across the Atlantic, in an op-ed for Bloomberg Law, US House Committee on Energy and Commerce Chair Cathy McMorris Rodgers and House Representative Jay Obernolte discuss the need for Congress to pass comprehensive federal privacy and security legislation as a critical first step toward achieving AI leadership.
In related news, Medium reports that former US President Barack Obama spoke about the use of artificial intelligence to benefit democracy instead of eroding it during the 2023 Obama Foundation Democracy Forum.
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