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Digital Euro Proposal Set for Debate as EU Advances Legislation Restricting AI

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Parliamentarians in the European Union (EU) are making headway in the development of regulations on two important topics: “digital euro” and artificial intelligence (AI). Recent reports indicate that this issue is being actively addressed to ensure a balanced and safe approach.

According to a June 14 report by Bloomberg, the European Commission has released a draft proposal that highlights potential requirements for the European Central Bank (ECB) regarding the use of the digital euro in relation to financial stability. The proposal suggests limiting its use while still allowing risk-free transactions to proceed freely. These limits will apply across the eurozone, ensuring consistent guidelines.

The draft text also states that accepting digital euros will become mandatory and be considered legal tender. However, under certain circumstances, parties may be able to reject the asset. This provision addresses any potential concerns or special circumstances that may arise.

The introduction of digital currencies, including the digital euro and other central bank digital currencies (CBDC), has sparked controversy within the crypto community because of their implications for government control. The degree of control these currencies provide has been debated and researched.

It is important to note that the draft proposal is subject to potential changes before the presentation scheduled for June 28. Recent reports also show that EU policymakers are divided on the need for a digital euro, indicating ongoing discussions.

In a separate development, the European Parliament made an unrelated announcement on 14 June about advancing the Artificial Intelligence (AI) Act to the next phase. The law received significant support, with 499 votes in favour, 28 against and 93 abstentions. This move signifies the adoption of a negotiating position rather than the direct enactment of legislation.

If the Artificial Intelligence Act does end up becoming law, it will impose restrictions on certain AI applications. In particular, discriminatory uses of AI, such as certain predictive policies and biometric applications, will be explicitly prohibited. Additionally, AI systems with potential impacts on health, safety, the environment, voting, or social media recommendations will be labeled as “high risk”.

In addition, the Act will introduce a requirement for base model providers to assess product risk and register before entering the EU market. Providers of generative AI models need to provide a summary of copyrighted training datasets and implement measures to prevent illegal content creation.

This development reflects the EU’s commitment to addressing new technologies and ensuring a responsible and orderly approach to the digital euro and artificial intelligence. As discussions continue and potential changes are considered, it remains to be seen how these regulations will shape the future of the EU’s digital landscape.

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