The FEM has carefully analysed the proposal for a Regulation on “A European Approach to Artificial Intelligence” presented by the European Commission in April 2021 and presents its position on it:
• While not in favour of any specific piece of legislation on AI systems in the industrial field, FEM agrees with the need to have a harmonisation piece of legislation preventing Member States from enacting diverging pieces of legislation that would threaten the fee circulation of our products in the EU Internal Market.
• The risk-based approach proposed by the European Commission should be much better fine-tuned by providing a better definition of AI, and of the notion of AI system affecting a safety function, considering the current legislation in place and the industrial environment. Most industrial AI application use cases have entirely different ethical implications compared to consumer-oriented AI solutions for end-consumers. Therefore, in most of the cases industrial AI should not be considered as a high-risk AI. The possibility given to the Commission to extend the list of high-risk AI systems should be counterbalanced by a proper consultation of stakeholders
• Most requirements of the future Regulation should be revised to make them proportionate, enforceable, and respectful of companies’ IPRs, notably with regards to data and data governance, technical documentation, record-keeping of events, transparency, and provision of information to users, appropriate human oversight measures to minimise risk and high-level of robustness, accuracy, and security
• A balance has to be found whereby the companies’ right to protect their know-how shall only be infringed in cases where such sharing of information has a substantial and indisputably necessary effect on safety or on the personal right to protect personal data.
• The respective roles and responsibilities of providers and users have to be clarified
• Standardisation and harmonised standards and not “common specifications” must remain the tool of choice to develop technical specifications offering compliance with essential requirements
• A single Declaration of Conformity (DoCs) for the final product, even composed of several DoCs, should be established
• Cybersecurity aspects should be dealt with in a dedicated horizontal legal act.
• The European AI Board should be supported by an advisory group of industry experts
For more information, see FEM position