A government council is considering regulating artificial intelligence technology

The central government’s Artificial Intelligence Strategy Board met on May 22 to discuss the establishment of laws and regulations to ensure the safety of artificial intelligence.

At the meeting, chaired by Professor Yutaka Matsuo of the University of Tokyo, members discussed the possible risks of artificial intelligence technology.

This includes the development of artificial intelligence weapons, violations of privacy and other human rights, and criminal applications.

The board noted that “it is necessary to consider how legal regulations should be applied to high-risk AI.”

The laws and regulations target companies that develop high-risk AI with significant social impact, such as Open AI, the US company that created ChatGPT.

The council also suggested that the government should consider responding effectively to companies that violate regulations and consider fines.

However, the council said the finer details would not be bound by laws and regulations. The goal is to leave as much responsibility as possible to the voluntary efforts of private businesses and industry associations, it said.

Many countries around the world have begun to establish laws and regulations on artificial intelligence, and Japan is beginning to follow suit.

In April, the government published non-legally binding guidance on AI for businesses.

Until now, the government has focused on promoting the development of artificial intelligence and has put artificial intelligence to work through the voluntary efforts of companies developing it.

However, some have pointed out that the government is not adequately addressing the risks posed by generative artificial intelligence.

Therefore, the government began to consider the possibility of legislative regulation.

On May 21, the European Union adopted the world’s first artificial intelligence act.

In the United States, President Joe Biden issued an executive order in October 2023 requiring AI developers to disclose information.

Other major countries are also considering legal regulations for this technology.

The Council will carefully examine the content of regulations adopted in Europe and the United States and consider what kind of laws and regulations would be appropriate for Japan.

The council intends to present the draft law at the regular session of the Diet next year.

(This article was written by Takeshi Narabe and Kenro Kuroda.)

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