Debate on AI Regulations Starts at Expert Panel; Japan Govt Policy Based on ‘Maximizing Benefits, Reducing Risk’

The Yomiuri Shimbun
Minister for Science and Technology Policy Sanae Takaichi, third from left, speaks at the AI Strategy Council in Tokyo on Wednesday.

The government began discussing regulations for artificial intelligence at an expert panel Wednesday, kicking off a debate on the pros and cons of introducing such rules that will take several years.

The government’s basic policies on AI regulations were presented at the day’s meeting of the AI Strategy Council, including a proposal that major AI developers be legally required to disclose certain information.

The basic policies suggest “maximizing benefits and reducing risks” from AI to ensure global competitiveness and improve the quality of life in Japan. Specific risks to be considered include human rights violations, security-related crimes, and infringement of intellectual property rights.

The government in April established non-binding guidelines that require AI providers to consider security. The basic policies state that appropriate regulations must be considered against “high-risk AI systems and AI that could lead to human rights violations and crimes.” They also note that major AI developers could be categorized as high risk since their products have a significant impact on the public, and that “a legal system to supplement the guidelines may be necessary for public safety and security.”

As to AI-based disinformation, the policies note the usefulness of “disseminating technologies that provide information on where content comes from and its history,” a reference to technologies such as Originator Profile, which identifies who created a piece of information online.