A PYMNTS Company

Netherlands Embraces Europe’s AI Act with €204.5 Million Allocation

 |  January 18, 2024

The Dutch government announced on Thursday that it will immediately adhere to the essence of Europe’s landmark AI Act. The commitment comes as part of the government’s comprehensive strategy outlined in a document aimed at harnessing the capabilities of generative AI systems, including advanced technologies like ChatGPT. The Netherlands has earmarked a substantial 204.5 million euros ($222.07 million) to foster local investment in AI, signaling a strong commitment to advancing the country’s position in the global AI landscape.

While the European Union reached a political deal on a risk-based model for regulating AI in December, some details are still being finalized, and the formal enactment is pending. However, the Dutch government asserted in its document that “the act is immediately effective as law in the Netherlands.” This decisive action reflects the government’s determination to proactively engage with the evolving landscape of AI, rather than waiting for all details to be finalized.

Thomas van Oortmerssen, spokesperson at the Netherlands’ interior ministry, emphasized the government’s stance: “Our standpoint is, let’s start dealing with what we know instead of waiting for final answers.” He highlighted that this approach provides regulatory clarity, offering businesses a solid foundation to navigate the AI space.

Read more: EU Reaches ‘Milestone’ On Road To Regulating AI

The 46-page vision document unveiled by the Dutch government acknowledges the challenges faced by local companies in competing with giant U.S. and Chinese AI firms. It attributes the disparity to the significant lead these global players have in developing software and acquiring computing power. The document calls for increased European cooperation to “gain a foothold” in the rapidly advancing field of AI.

The allocation of 204.5 million euros for local AI investment underscores the government’s commitment to cultivating a robust AI ecosystem within the Netherlands. This funding is expected to fuel research, development, and innovation in AI, empowering local businesses to remain competitive on the international stage.

The Dutch government’s proactive approach to AI regulation and investment reflects a broader trend within Europe to position itself as a global leader in responsible and innovative AI development.

Source: Reuters