Council of Europe starts work on legally-binding AI treaty

Council of Europe, Strasbourg

The Council of Europe is working on a future legal framework to regulate the use of artificial intelligence (AI) across all 47 member states.

The Council’s Ad hoc Committee on Artificial Intelligence (CAHAI) held a three-day meeting on 6-8 July attended by around 150 international experts. The purpose of the meeting was to draw up “concrete proposals on the feasibility study of a future legal framework on artificial intelligence based on human rights, democracy and the rule of law,” according to the Council.

Representatives from all 47 member states, including Russia, attended the online meeting alongside delegates from ‘observer states’ (USA, Canada, Japan, Mexico, the Vatican and Israel) and AI experts drawn from civil society, academia, and business. Other international organisations such as the EU, OECD and the UN will also contribute to CAHAI’s work on potential AI regulation.

The first draft of the feasibility study is due to be presented at the next CAHAI plenary meeting in December 2020. The panel will then make a decision by the end of the year on whether a legally binding treaty should go ahead; if it does it could be delivered within as little as two years, Politico reported.

This content has been updated on 10 February 2022 at 16 h 10 min.