E.U. AI Act: a step closer to legislating Artificial Intelligence

In April 2021 the European Commission presented the EU policy proposal to promote the development and adoption, in the internal market, of safe and legal ΑΙ (Artificial Intelligence) applications that respect fundamental rights. Today the European Institutions are even further close to finalize and implement one of the most important legislations globally, so that the law is not struggling to keep up with technology.

Purpose of an AI policy.

Firstly, the purpose of this policy is to promote the adoption of human-centered and trustworthy artificial intelligence and to ensure a high level of protection of health, safety, fundamental rights, democracy and the rule of law and the environment from the harmful effects of artificial intelligence systems in the European Union, while supporting innovation and improving the functioning of the internal market.

Law-making procedures on the EU field.

During May 2023 the Internal Market Committee and the Civil Liberties Committee adopted a draft negotiating mandate on the first ever rules for Artificial Intelligence. In their amendments to the Commission’s proposal, MEPs (Members of the European Parliament) aim to ensure that AI systems are overseen by people, are safe, transparent, traceable, non-discriminatory, and environmentally friendly. They also want to have a uniform definition for AI designed to be technology-neutral, so that it can apply to the AI systems of today and tomorrow.

During this June the Plenary of the European Parliament, is expected to approve the positions of its Presidency and approach the negotiations with the Commission and the Council, which have already defined their own framework, from April 2021 and in December 2022 respectively. The ultimate goal is to pass the so-called Artificial Intelligence Act as soon as possible and then implement it

The AI policy as shaped until today

The proposals until this day take a risk-based approach and establish a single, horizontal legal framework for AI, which aims to ensure legal certainty. It promotes investment and innovation in IT, strengthens governance and effective enforcement of existing laws on fundamental rights and security, and facilitates the development of a single market for IT applications. The proposals are linked to other initiatives such as the coordinated plan on artificial intelligence which aims to accelerate investment in AI in Europe.

In order to ensure that the definition of an AI system provides criteria that are sufficiently clear to distinguish AI from simpler software systems, the Council text limits the definition to systems developed through machine learning and logic-based approaches and knowledge. Risk based approach to AI – Prohibited AI practices

MEPs substantially amended the list to include bans on intrusive and discriminatory uses of AI systems such as:

  • “Real-time” remote biometric identification systems in publicly accessible spaces;
  • “Post” remote biometric identification systems, with the only exception of law enforcement for the prosecution of serious crimes and only after judicial authorization;
  • Biometric categorization systems using sensitive characteristics (e.g., gender, race, ethnicity, citizenship status, religion, political orientation);
  • Predictive policing systems (based on profiling, location or past criminal behavior);
  • Emotion recognition systems in law enforcement, border management, workplace, and educational institutions; and
  • Indiscriminate scraping of biometric data from social media or CCTV footage to create facial recognition databases (violating human rights and right to privacy

Regarding the classification of IT systems as high risk, the proposals provide an additional horizontal level on top of the high-risk classification to ensure that it does not include IT systems that are not likely to cause serious violations of fundamental rights or involve other significant risks.

Explicit reference is made to the exclusion of purposes related to national security, defense and military purposes from the scope of the act on TN. Similarly, it clarifies that the IT act should not apply to IT systems and their outputs used exclusively for research and development purposes nor to the obligations of persons using IT for non-professional purposes, which are not covered by the scope of the AI act, with the exception of transparency obligations.

As regards sanctions for infringements of the provisions of the ΑΙ act, it provides for more proportionate caps on administrative fines to be imposed on SMEs (small and medium size entrepreneurships) and start-ups.

In general, the European Parliament intends to introduce mandatory labelling for AI-generated content and mandate the disclosure of training data covered by copyright. This move comes as generative AI, exemplified by ChatGPT, gained widespread attention—prompting the European Commission to launch outreach initiatives to foster international alignment on AI rules.


Regulating artificial intelligence is one of the most important political challenges of our time.  EU initiative to tame the risks associated with technologies that are already revolutionizing our daily lives is of a global interest as it is a pioneering effort on the legal world.  

Nexus law firm is highly interested in IT and New Technologies law; thus, our partners and associates are already qualified in such fields, aiming to be ahead in the new challenging digital era where the legal framework must adapt.