Nearshore Americas

In Fear of Job Losses, LATAM Countries Begin Regulating AI

Many countries in Latin America are exploring ways to regulate the development of artificial intelligence (AI), as concerns mount that the technology could displace jobs and widen the gulf between the rich and poor.

In a 2020 report, the OECD predicted that more than 25% of jobs in Latin America could be at risk of being replaced by machines, one of the highest rates in the world.

Analysts are advising governments to increase stakeholder engagement in national AI strategies, warning that inflexible measures, such as a total ban on innovation, would limit the region’s ability to influence the design of new AI tools and modulate their deployment on a regional scale.

Here are some examples of how countries in Latin America are approaching AI regulation:

  • Mexico: A bill has been proposed to create the Mexican Council of Ethics for Artificial Intelligence and Robotics, which would be responsible for overseeing the development and use of AI in the country. The bill would require all entities that use AI to provide information about their use to the Council.
  • Brazil: A senate committee drafted a report about the potential impact of AI. The draft will serve as a starting point for the Senate’s further deliberations on new AI legislation. The draft law imposes a number of requirements on AI systems, including the need to be transparent, accountable and fair. It also prohibits the use of AI systems for certain purposes, such as mass surveillance.
  • Colombia: A legislative bill has been tabled to regulate AI. However, it is still in the legislative process and has not yet been passed into law. Some experts have criticized the bill, saying that it is too restrictive and lacks solid technical foundations.
  • Chile: Chile set out guidelines on AI, but has yet to publish actual policy. A formal law to regulate AI is still months away.
  •  Argentina: Argentina is gathering public opinion on regulating technology. The country already enacted a number of laws that could apply to AI, such as the Personal Data Protection Law and the Consumer Protection Law. However, these do not specifically address AI.
  • Peru: In 2022, the Ministry of Justice and Human Rights published a report on the regulation of AI in Peru. The report identifies a number of challenges and opportunities.

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It is still too early to say what the future of AI regulation in Latin America will look like. However, it is clear that governments in the region are taking the issue seriously and are working to develop policies that will balance the potential benefits and risks of AI.

Narayan Ammachchi

News Editor for Nearshore Americas, Narayan Ammachchi is a career journalist with a decade of experience in politics and international business. He works out of his base in the Indian Silicon City of Bangalore.

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