EESC opinion on the Proposal for a Regulation of the European Parliament and of the Council laying down harmonised rules on artificial intelligence (Artificial Intelligence Act) and amending certain union legislative acts.
The EESC is pleased that the proposal puts health, safety and fundamental rights at its centre and is global in scope.
The EESC sees areas for improvement regarding:
- the scope, definition and clarity of the prohibited AI practices;
- the implications of the categorisation choices made in relation to the "risk pyramid";
- the risk-mitigating effect of the requirements for high-risk AI;
- the enforceability of the AIA; and
- the relation to existing regulation and other recent regulatory proposals.
In addition, the EESC:
- recommends clarifying the prohibitions regarding "subliminal techniques" and "exploitation of vulnerabilities" so as to reflect the prohibition of harmful manipulation;
- welcomes the prohibition of "social scoring" and recommends that the prohibition also apply to private organisations and semi-public authorities;
- calls for a ban on use of AI for automated biometric recognition in publicly and privately accessible spaces, except for very specific cases;
- welcomes the alignment of the requirements for high-risk AI with elements of the Ethics guidelines for trustworthy AI and recommends to include all requirements from these guidelines;
- recommends making third party conformity assessments obligatory for all high-risk AI and including a complaints and redress mechanism for organisations and citizens that have suffered harm from any AI system.
In line with its long advocated "human-in-command" approach to AI, the EESC strongly recommends that the AIA provide for certain decisions to remain the prerogative of humans.
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