The key points included in the document are the following:
- Fostering AI development and utility – The Council underlines the importance of fostering development and use of Artificial Intelligence (AI) in Europe to transfer new results and insights from fundamental research to AI to industry.
- Healthcare – The Council recognises that AI in healthcare is particularly promising and impactful.
- Diffusion and access to AI – The Council supports the diffusion of and access to AI capacity in each Member State through the network of AI digital innovation hubs and clusters and the AI-on-demand platform via different EU funds.
- Data - a cornerstone for AI – The Council stresses the need to make more data available for AI development and to create a common European data space as well as reference sites for AI testing and experimentation in the EU.
- Ethical Guidelines on AI – The Council supports the Commission’s effort to bring an ethical approach to the global stage (first draft of its Ethics Guidelines for AI)
- AI Worldwide – The Council encourages the efforts of Member States to place European companies among the drivers of AI worldwide.
- Key role of the Competitiveness Council – The Council stresses that the Competitiveness Council together with the Member States' Group on Digitising European Industry and AI should play a key role in monitoring the implementation and annual updating of the Coordinated Plan on Artificial Intelligence, while taking into account that ethical and security aspects of AI fall under the remit of other Council formations.
The Council calls
- For a broader approach towards an education for AI, science, technology, engineering and mathematics at all levels;
- On Member States to exchange, best practices on how to reinforce excellence to retain and attract talents in EU, to perform and foster the uptake of AI.
The Council recommends the development of high-end applications in all economic sectors to help solve the world's biggest challenges, including the curing of diseases.
The Working Party on Competitiveness and Growth (Industry) will now meet a number of times to examine the document. After being discussed by the working party, the conclusions are going for further consideration in the Council.. The final conclusions will have to be adopted by consensus. In exceptional cases, the Council may adopt such a text as 'presidency conclusions' without the need of Member States’ approval. Please note, Council Conclusions are not legally binging but rather express a political position on a topic related to the EU’s areas of activity.
On 7 December, the European Commission presented a coordinated plan on Artificial Intelligence (AI) prepared with Member States, Norway and Switzerland to foster the development and use of AI in Europe. This coordinated plan for “AI made in Europe” details actions to start in 2019 /2020 and prepares the ground for activities in the following years. Coordination with Member States will continue and the plan will be reviewed and updated annually.