Final draft of AI law will be ready by September: minister

The legislation is essential to addressing the risks and harness the potential of artificial intelligence, a state minister says

Published : 4 April 2024, 12:03 PM
Updated : 4 April 2024, 12:03 PM

The final draft of a law on artificial intelligence will be ready by September this year, according to Law Minister Anisul Huq.

The draft will be formed after speaking to the stakeholders involved, he said.

The law minister was the chief guest at a stakeholder meeting on the drafting of the law at the Bangladesh Telecommunication Regulatory Commission building in Dhaka’s Agargaon on Thursday.

The meeting was attended by representatives of various ministries, departments, offices, and organisations of the government and other stakeholders.

It was presided over by State Minister for Posts, Telecommunications and Information Technology Zunaid Ahmed Palak.

The legislation is essential to addressing the risks and harnessing the potential of artificial intelligence, Palak said, according to a press release from the Ministry of Law.

Law Minister Huq highlighted the dire need for a law on artificial intelligence to implement the Smart Bangladesh and Smart Generation initiatives announced by Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina by 2041.

He said, “Artificial intelligence has both good and bad aspects. There is nothing to be afraid of. The government has taken initiative to enact the Artificial Intelligence (AI) Act to minimise its negatives."

The minister added that whenever a law is made by the Hasina government, stakeholders are consulted and their opinions are taken into consideration.

The government is currently involved in that process.

"Previously, laws were drafted and discussed with the stakeholders. Now I want to make a draft after hearing the opinions of the participants. That is why this exchange meeting is organised for the stakeholders of the 'AI' Act."

Referring to the legal requirement, the minister said that fake photos of Sheikh Hasina Software Technology Park in Jashore generated using artificial intelligence circulated on social media recently.

“The way artificial intelligence is progressing, there is no way to legislate it. However, in the first stage, there should be enough flexibility under this law. The only thing is that it needs to be a little tougher on the controls.”

Huq pointed out the need for a synergy between artificial intelligence law and policy, saying that there is no point in making law outside of the boundaries of policy or a policy that breaches the law.