European Lawmakers Green-Light New Rules Regulating AI

European lawmakers voted on Thursday, May 11, to green-light new rules on regulating artificial intelligence (AI) in the EU.

The proposed legislation, under the AI Act, aims “to ensure a human-centric and ethical development” of AI, and targets certain tools such as biometric identification and facial recognition.

The Internal Market Committee and the Civil Liberties Committee voted by 84 votes in favor of adopting a draft negotiating mandate, which will be put before the European Parliament in June. “Once approved, they will be the world’s first rules on Artificial Intelligence,” the parliament said.

Footage shows Romanian MEP Dragos Tudorache and Italian MEP Brando Benifei speaking before the vote, followed by the announcement of the result. Credit: European Parliament via Storyful

Video transcript

DRAGOS TUDORACHE: Clearly, it is an important day today. As you said yourself, we started, I think, literally almost to the day a year ago, with receiving over 3,000 amendments. I think that is a testimony in itself of how important this text is, how important it is for every political group. And I think that the work that we've done over this past year has been work that showed that we are also capable of negotiating, of making concessions, as coming from very different corners of the room.

And I can-- I can tell you-- and Brando is also a witness, that when we first saw the amendments on some of the articles, we thought it is almost impossible to put the square in a circle. But again, given your wisdom-- and I really want to thank for the collective effort that we've done with the shadow rapporteurs. I want to Thank. Each and every one of them and their teams for, again, the wisdom and the will to actually find the deal that we found last week.

It is a delicate deal. But it is a package that, I think, gives everyone that participated in these negotiations, something to put their necks, the political identity of their group. And I think that also is important. And the fact that our societies expect us to do something determined about artificial intelligence and the impact that it has on their lives, I think, is also an understatement, it's enough to turn on the TV since the last two or three months, almost every day to show and to see how important this file is becoming for our citizens.

BRANDO BENIFEI: The verge of building a really landmark legislation on the digital landscape, not just for Europe but also for the world. Everyone is looking at us. Today, many news outlets of all the world has been talking about this. And it's a big responsibility.

But as my corapporteur Dragos Tudorache very clearly said, we have done a big effort to bring the Parliament together, build a strong text that can resist the changes in time. Be flexible enough but also strong enough to confront the challenges we are living in today.

We are already living in a time where artificial intelligence to make it possible for it to foster all its opportunities, needs to be regulated. We should not wait more time. We should now deliver. And we hope that the council will also be able with our final text that we will bring to the plenary for a vote in a couple of weeks, will be able to negotiate for the real interests of citizens.

Without trust in a democracy, without building the consensus of people around introducing a life-changing technology, we cannot stand. And Europe, in this way with this regulation, is putting a strong piece of this approach. An ethical approach, a human-centered approach that can sustain innovation, promote the development of economy and business, bring opportunity to people, and protect fundamental rights.

We will not stand back from that. And I think we really did a good job with all the groups. Thank you for all the shadow rapporteurs that [? speak ?] to me and Dragos Tudorache. We work very well. And thanks to all the teams that have done a great work in front of a really big amount of amendments and a lot of text to bring to a synthesis.

I think we have a good text now that we will vote on today. And I want to thank, really, all the colleagues for this effort together. Thank you very much.

- Adopted by a very large majority.




Congratulations to the two rapporteurs, to all the shadows, to the team that worked so endlessly on the file. I wish you a very good day. The meeting is adjourned.