Hard Law or Soft Law? –Global AI Regulation Developments and Regulatory Considerations

Hard Law or Soft Law?
–Global AI Regulation Developments and Regulatory Considerations

2023/08/18

Since the launch of ChatGPT on November 30, 2022, the technology has been disrupting industries, shifting the way things used to work, bringing benefits but also problems. Several law suits were filed by artists, writers and voice actors in the US, claiming that the usage of copyright materials in training generative AI violates their copyright.[1] AI deepfake, hallucination and bias has also become the center of discussion, as the generation of fake news, false information, and biased decisions could deeply affect human rights and the society as a whole.[2]

To retain the benefits of AI without causing damage to the society, regulators around the world have been accelerating their pace in establishing AI regulations. However, with the technology evolving at such speed and uncertainty, there is a lack of consensus on which regulation approach can effectively safeguard human rights while promoting innovation. This article will provide an overview of current AI regulation developments around the world, a preliminary analysis of the pros and cons of different regulation approaches, and point out some other elements that regulators should consider.

I. An overview of the current AI regulation landscape around the world

The EU has its lead in legislation, with its parliament adopting its position on the AI ACT in June 2023, heading into trilogue meetings that aim to reach an agreement by the end of this year.[3] China has also announced its draft National AI ACT, scheduled to enter its National People's Congress before the end of 2023.[4] It already has several administration rules in place, such as the 2021 regulation on recommendation algorithms, the 2022 rules for deep synthesis, and the 2023 draft rules on generative AI.[5]

Some other countries have been taking a softer approach, preferring voluntary guidelines and testing schemes. The UK published its AI regulation plans in March, seeking views on its sectoral guideline-based pro-innovation regulation approach.[6] To minimize uncertainty for companies, it proposed a set of regulatory principles to ensure that government bodies develop guidelines in a consistent manner.[7] The US National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST) released the AI Risk Management Framework in January[8], with a non-binding Blueprint for an AI Bill of Rights published in October 2022, providing guidance on the design and use of AI with a set of principles.[9] It is important to take note that some States have drafted regulations on specific subjects, such as New York City’s Final Regulations on Use of AI in Hiring and Promotion came into force in July 2023.[10] Singapore launched the world’s first AI testing framework and toolkit international pilot in May 2022, with the assistance of AWS, DBS Bank, Google, Meta, Microsoft, Singapore Airlines, etc. After a year of testing, it open-sourced the software toolkit in July 2023, to better develop the system.[11]

There are also some countries still undecided on their regulation approach. Australia commenced a public consultation on its AI regulatory framework proposal in June[12], seeking views on its draft AI risk management approach.[13] Taiwan’s government announced in July 2023 to propose a draft AI basic law by September 2023, covering topics such as AI-related definition, privacy protections, data governance, risk management, ethical principles, and industrial promotion.[14] However, the plan was recently postponed, indicating a possible shift towards voluntary or mandatory government principles and guidance, before establishing the law.[15]

II. Hard law or soft law? The pros and cons of different regulatory approaches

One of the key advantages of hard law in AI regulation is its ability to provide binding legal obligations and legal enforcement mechanisms that ensure accountability and compliance.[16] Hard law also provides greater legal certainty, transparency and remedies for consumers and companies, which is especially important for smaller companies that do not have as many resources to influence and comply with fast-changing soft law.[17] However, the legislative process can be time-consuming, slower to update, and less agile.[18] This poses the risk of stifling innovation, as hard law inevitably cannot keep pace with the rapidly evolving AI technology.[19]

In contrast, soft law represents a more flexible and adaptive approach to AI regulation. As the potential of AI still remains largely mysterious, government bodies can formulate principles and guidelines tailored to the regulatory needs of different industry sectors.[20] In addition, if there are adequate incentives in place for actors to comply, the cost of enforcement could be much lower than hard laws. Governments can also experiment with several different soft law approaches to test their effectiveness.[21] However, the voluntary nature of soft law and the lack of legal enforcement mechanisms could lead to inconsistent adoption and undermine the effectiveness of these guidelines, potentially leaving critical gaps in addressing AI's risks.[22] Additionally, in cases of AI-related harms, soft law could not offer effective protection on consumer rights and human rights, as there is no clear legal obligation to facilitate accountability and remedies.[23]

Carlos Ignacio Gutierrez and Gary Marchant, faculty members at Arizona State University (ASU), analyzed 634 AI soft law programs against 100 criteria and found that two-thirds of the program lack enforcement mechanisms to deliver its anticipated AI governance goals. He pointed out that credible indirect enforcement mechanisms and a perception of legitimacy are two critical elements that could strengthen soft law’s effectiveness.[24] For example, to publish stem cell research in top academic journals, the author needs to demonstrate that the research complies with related research standards.[25] In addition, companies usually have a greater incentive to comply with private standards to avoid regulatory shifts towards hard laws with higher costs and constraints.[26]

III. Other considerations

Apart from understanding the strengths and limitations of soft law and hard law, it is important for governments to consider each country’s unique differences. For example, Singapore has always focused on voluntary approaches as it acknowledges that being a small country, close cooperation with the industry, research organizations, and other governments to formulate a strong AI governance practice is much more important than rushing into legislation.[27] For them, the flexibility and lower cost of soft regulation provide time to learn from industries to prevent forming rules that aren’t addressing real-world issues.[28] This process allows preparation for better legislation at a later stage.

Japan has also shifted towards a softer approach to minimize legal compliance costs, as it recognizes its slower position in the AI race.[29] For them, the EU AI Act is aiming at regulating Giant Tech companies, rather than promoting innovation.[30] That is why Japan considers that hard law does not suit the industry development stage they’re currently in.[31] Therefore, they seek to address legal issues with current laws and draft relevant guidance.[32]

IV. Conclusion

As the global AI regulatory landscape continues to evolve, it is important for governments to consider the pros and cons of hard law and soft law, and also country-specific conditions in deciding what’s suitable for the country. Additionally, a regular review on the effectiveness and impact of their chosen regulatory approach on AI’s development and the society is recommended.

 

[1] ChatGPT and Deepfake-Creating Apps: A Running List of Key AI-Lawsuits, TFL, https://www.thefashionlaw.com/from-chatgpt-to-deepfake-creating-apps-a-running-list-of-key-ai-lawsuits/ (last visited Aug 10, 2023); Protection for Voice Actors is Artificial in Today’s Artificial Intelligence World, The National Law Review, https://www.natlawreview.com/article/protection-voice-actors-artificial-today-s-artificial-intelligence-world (last visited Aug 10, 2023).

[2] The politics of AI: ChatGPT and political bias, Brookings, https://www.brookings.edu/articles/the-politics-of-ai-chatgpt-and-political-bias/ (last visited Aug 10, 2023); Prospect of AI Producing News Articles Concerns Digital Experts, VOA, https://www.voanews.com/a/prospect-of-ai-producing-news-articles-concerns-digital-experts-/7202519.html (last visited Aug 10, 2023).

[3] EU AI Act: first regulation on artificial intelligence, European Parliament, https://www.europarl.europa.eu/news/en/headlines/society/20230601STO93804/eu-ai-act-first-regulation-on-artificial-intelligence (last visited Aug 10, 2023).

[4] 中國國務院發布立法計畫 年內審議AI法草案,經濟日報(2023/06/09),https://money.udn.com/money/story/5604/7223533 (last visited Aug 10, 2023).

[5] id

[6] A pro-innovation approach to AI regulation, GOV.UK, https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/ai-regulation-a-pro-innovation-approach/white-paper (last visited Aug 10, 2023).

[7] id

[8] AI RISK MANAGEMENT FRAMEWORK, NIST, https://www.nist.gov/itl/ai-risk-management-framework (last visited Aug 10, 2023).

[9] The White House released an ‘AI Bill of Rights’, CNN, https://edition.cnn.com/2022/10/04/tech/ai-bill-of-rights/index.html (last visited Aug 10, 2023).

[10] New York City Adopts Final Regulations on Use of AI in Hiring and Promotion, Extends Enforcement Date to July 5, 2023, Littler https://www.littler.com/publication-press/publication/new-york-city-adopts-final-regulations-use-ai-hiring-and-promotionv (last visited Aug 10, 2023).

[11] IMDA, Fact sheet - Open-Sourcing of AI Verify and Set Up of AI Verify Foundation (2023), https://www.imda.gov.sg/-/media/imda/files/news-and-events/media-room/media-releases/2023/06/7-jun---ai-annoucements---annex-a.pdf (last visited Aug 10, 2023).

[12] Supporting responsible AI: discussion paper, Australia Government Department of Industry, Science and Resources,https://consult.industry.gov.au/supporting-responsible-ai (last visited Aug 10, 2023).

[13] Australian Government Department of Industry, Science and Resources, Safe and responsible AI in Australia (2023), https://storage.googleapis.com/converlens-au-industry/industry/p/prj2452c8e24d7a400c72429/public_assets/Safe-and-responsible-AI-in-Australia-discussion-paper.pdf (last visited Aug 10, 2023).

[14] 張璦,中央通訊社,AI基本法草案聚焦隱私保護、應用合法性等7面向 擬設打假中心,https://www.cna.com.tw/news/ait/202307040329.aspx (最後瀏覽日:2023/08/10)。

[15] 蘇思云,中央通訊社,2023/08/01,鄭文燦:考量技術發展快應用廣 AI基本法延後提出,https://www.cna.com.tw/news/afe/202308010228.aspx (最後瀏覽日:2023/08/10)。

[16] supra, note 13, at 27.

[17] id.

[18] id., at 28.

[19] Soft law as a complement to AI regulation, Brookings, https://www.brookings.edu/articles/soft-law-as-a-complement-to-ai-regulation/ (last visited Aug 10, 2023).

[20] supra, note 5.

[21] Gary Marchant, “Soft Law” Governance of Artificial Intelligence (2019), https://escholarship.org/uc/item/0jq252ks (last visited Aug 10, 2023).

[22] How soft law is used in AI governance, Brookings,https://www.brookings.edu/articles/how-soft-law-is-used-in-ai-governance/ (last visited Aug 10, 2023).

[23] supra, note 13, at 27.

[24] Why Soft Law is the Best Way to Approach the Pacing Problem in AI, Carnegie Council for Ethics in International Affairs,https://www.carnegiecouncil.org/media/article/why-soft-law-is-the-best-way-to-approach-the-pacing-problem-in-ai (last visited Aug 10, 2023).

[25] id.

[26] id.

[28] id.

[29] Japan leaning toward softer AI rules than EU, official close to deliberations says, Reuters, https://www.reuters.com/technology/japan-leaning-toward-softer-ai-rules-than-eu-source-2023-07-03/ (last visited Aug 10, 2023).

[30] id.

[31] id.

[32] id.

 

※Hard Law or Soft Law? –Global AI Regulation Developments and Regulatory Considerations,STLI, https://stli.iii.org.tw/en/article-detail.aspx?no=55&tp=2&i=168&d=9051 (Date:2024/07/21)
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The opening and sharing of scientific data- The Data Policy of the U.S. National Institutes of Health

The opening and sharing of scientific data- The Data Policy of the U.S. National Institutes of Health Li-Ting Tsai   Scientific research improves the well-being of all mankind, the data sharing on medical and health promote the overall amount of energy in research field. For promoting the access of scientific data and research findings which was supported by the government, the U.S. government affirmed in principle that the development of science was related to the retention and accesses of data. The disclosure of information should comply with legal restrictions, and the limitation by time as well. For government-sponsored research, the data produced was based on the principle of free access, and government policies should also consider the actual situation of international cooperation[1]Furthermore, the access of scientific research data would help to promote scientific development, therefore while formulating a sharing policy, the government should also consider the situation of international cooperation, and discuss the strategy of data disclosure based on the principle of free access.   In order to increase the effectiveness of scientific data, the U.S. National Institutes of Health (NIH) set up the Office of Science Policy (OSP) to formulate a policy which included a wide range of issues, such as biosafety (biosecurity), genetic testing, genomic data sharing, human subjects protections, the organization and management of the NIH, and the outputs and value of NIH-funded research. Through extensive analysis and reports, proposed emerging policy recommendations.[2] At the level of scientific data sharing, NIH focused on "genes and health" and "scientific data management". The progress of biomedical research depended on the access of scientific data; sharing scientific data was helpful to verify research results. Researchers integrated data to strengthen analysis, promoted the reuse of difficult-generated data, and accelerated research progress.[3] NIH promoted the use of scientific data through data management to verify and share research results.   For assisting data sharing, NIH had issued a data management and sharing policy (DMS Policy), which aimed to promote the sharing of scientific data funded or conducted by NIH.[4] DMS Policy defines “scientific data.” as “The recorded factual material commonly accepted in the scientific community as of sufficient quality to validate and replicate research findings, regardless of whether the data are used to support scholarly publications. Scientific data do not include laboratory notebooks, preliminary analyses, completed case report forms, drafts of scientific papers, plans for future research, peer reviews, communications with colleagues, or physical objects, such as laboratory specimens.”[5] In other words, for determining scientific data, it is not only based on whether the data can support academic publications, but also based on whether the scientific data is a record of facts and whether the research results can be repeatedly verified.   In addition, NIH, NIH research institutes, centers, and offices have had expected sharing of data, such as: scientific data sharing, related standards, database selection, time limitation, applicable and presented in the plan; if not applicable, the researcher should propose the data sharing and management methods in the plan. NIH also recommended that the management and sharing of data should implement the FAIR (Findable, Accessible, Interoperable and Reusable) principles. The types of data to be shared should first in general descriptions and estimates, the second was to list meta-data and other documents that would help to explain scientific data. NIH encouraged the sharing of scientific data as soon as possible, no later than the publication or implementation period.[6] It was said that even each research project was not suitable for the existing sharing strategy, when planning a proposal, the research team should still develop a suitable method for sharing and management, and follow the FAIR principles.   The scientific research data which was provided by the research team would be stored in a database which was designated by the policy or funder. NIH proposed a list of recommended databases lists[7], and described the characteristics of ideal storage databases as “have unique and persistent identifiers, a long-term and sustainable data management plan, set up metadata, organizing data and quality assurance, free and easy access, broad and measured reuse, clear use guidance, security and integrity, confidentiality, common format, provenance and data retention policy”[8]. That is to say, the design of the database should be easy to search scientific data, and should maintain the security, integrity and confidentiality and so on of the data while accessing them.   In the practical application of NIH shared data, in order to share genetic research data, NIH proposed a Genomic Data Sharing (GDS) Policy in 2014, including NIH funding guidelines and contracts; NIH’s GDS policy applied to all NIHs Funded research, the generated large-scale human or non-human genetic data would be used in subsequent research. [9] This can effectively promote genetic research forward.   The GDS policy obliged researchers to provide genomic data; researchers who access genomic data should also abide by the terms that they used the Controlled-Access Data for research.[10] After NIH approved, researchers could use the NIH Controlled-Access Data for secondary research.[11] Reviewed by NIH Data Access Committee, while researchers accessed data must follow the terms which was using Controlled-Access Data for research reason.[12] The Genomic Summary Results (GSR) was belong to NIH policy,[13] and according to the purpose of GDS policy, GSR was defined as summary statistics which was provided by researchers, and non-sensitive data was included to the database that was designated by NIH.[14] Namely. NIH used the application and approval of control access data to strike a balance between the data of limitation access and scientific development.   For responding the COVID-19 and accelerating the development of treatments and vaccines, NIH's data sharing and management policy alleviated the global scientific community’s need for opening and sharing scientific data. This policy established data sharing as a basic component in the research process.[15] In conclusion, internalizing data sharing in the research process will help to update the research process globally and face the scientific challenges of all mankind together. [1]NATIONAL SCIENCE AND TECHNOLOGY COUNCIL, COMMITTEE ON SCIENCE, SUBCOMMITEE ON INTERNATIONAL ISSUES, INTERAGENCY WORKING GROUP ON OPEN DATA SHARING POLICY, Principles For Promoting Access To Federal Government-Supported Scientific Data And Research Findings Through International Scientific Cooperation (2016), 1, organized from Principles, at 5-8, https://obamawhitehouse.archives.gov/sites/default/files/microsites/ostp/NSTC/iwgodsp_principles_0.pdf (last visited December 14, 2020). [2]About Us, Welcome to NIH Office of Science Policy, NIH National Institutes of Health Office of Science Policy, https://osp.od.nih.gov/about-us/ (last visited December 7, 2020). [3]NIH Data Management and Sharing Activities Related to Public Access and Open Science, NIH National Institutes of Health Office of Science Policy, https://osp.od.nih.gov/scientific-sharing/nih-data-management-and-sharing-activities-related-to-public-access-and-open-science/ (last visited December 10, 2020). [4]Final NIH Policy for Data Management and Sharing, NIH National Institutes of Health Office of Extramural Research, Office of The Director, National Institutes of Health (OD), https://grants.nih.gov/grants/guide/notice-files/NOT-OD-21-013.html (last visited December 11, 2020). [5]Final NIH Policy for Data Management and Sharing, NIH National Institutes of Health Office of Extramural Research, Office of The Director, National Institutes of Health (OD), https://grants.nih.gov/grants/guide/notice-files/NOT-OD-21-013.html (last visited December 12, 2020). [6]Supplemental Information to the NIH Policy for Data Management and Sharing: Elements of an NIH Data Management and Sharing Plan, Office of The Director, National Institutes of Health (OD), https://grants.nih.gov/grants/guide/notice-files/NOT-OD-21-014.html (last visited December 13, 2020). [7]The list of databases in details please see:Open Domain-Specific Data Sharing Repositories, NIH National Library of Medicine, https://www.nlm.nih.gov/NIHbmic/domain_specific_repositories.html (last visited December 24, 2020). [8]Supplemental Information to the NIH Policy for Data Management and Sharing: Selecting a Repository for Data Resulting from NIH-Supported Research, Office of The Director, National Institutes of Health (OD), https://grants.nih.gov/grants/guide/notice-files/NOT-OD-21-016.html (last visited December 13, 2020). [9]NIH Genomic Data Sharing, National Institutes of Health Office of Science Policy, https://osp.od.nih.gov/scientific-sharing/genomic-data-sharing/ (last visited December 15, 2020). [10]NIH Genomic Data Sharing Policy, National Institutes of Health (NIH), https://grants.nih.gov/grants/guide/notice-files/NOT-OD-14-124.html (last visited December 17, 2020). [11]NIH Genomic Data Sharing Policy, National Institutes of Health (NIH), https://grants.nih.gov/grants/guide/notice-files/NOT-OD-14-124.html (last visited December 17, 2020). [12]id. [13]NIH National Institutes of Health Turning Discovery into Health, Responsible Use of Human Genomic Data An Informational Resource, 1, at 6, https://osp.od.nih.gov/wp-content/uploads/Responsible_Use_of_Human_Genomic_Data_Informational_Resource.pdf (last visited December 17, 2020). [14]Update to NIH Management of Genomic Summary Results Access, National Institutes of Health (NIH), https://grants.nih.gov/grants/guide/notice-files/NOT-OD-19-023.html (last visited December 17, 2020). [15]Francis S. Collins, Statement on Final NIH Policy for Data Management and Sharing, National Institutes of Health Turning Discovery Into Health, https://www.nih.gov/about-nih/who-we-are/nih-director/statements/statement-final-nih-policy-data-management-sharing (last visited December 14, 2020).

The Status of Taiwan's Regulations Concerning with Access to Biological Resources

Preface In actual practice, the research and development of biotech medicine, food, and environmental products cannot be done by in-lab researches. This is a unique character of the biotechnology industry. To get the research going, the researchers need to search for and exploit new biological materials and, samples outside the lab. Therefore, the access to and management of biological resources have significant impact on the stimulation and development of national biotech industry. Ever since the enforcement of Convention on Biological Diversity (CBD) in 1992 by 172 countries, a general principal about conserving biological diversity and using biological resources has been set. According to CBD, States have sovereign rights over their own biological resources. CBD also encourages each State to access to and manage the biological resources conformed with the principals of conservation, sustainability, NOEL environment friendly, and adequate sharing of benefit arising from biological resources. Therefore, issues such as environmental protection and sustainability have become political issues internationally. If the ABS system for the access to biological resources is designed too strictly, the establishment of the system will make the research and development staffs and related institutions hang back with hesitation both domestically and internationally. Their intention of bioprospecting in the designated country will then be reduced. On the other hand, if the system is designed too loosely, it will not be able to protect the rights of the owner of the resources. As a result, currently, every country holds a cautious attitude in setting up the regulations of managing the access to biological resources. Currently, many countries and regional international organizations already set up ABS system, such as Andean Community, African Union, Association of Southeast Asia Nations (ASEAN), Australia, South Africa, and India, all are enthusiastic with the establishment of the regulations regarding the access management of biological resources and genetic resources. On the other hand, there are still many countries only use traditional and existing conservation-related regulations to manage the access of biological resources. Since it has been more than 10 years that the regulation of access to biological resources and benefit sharing has been developed in some countries, how is Taiwan's current situation regarding this issue? Taiwan's Existing Regulations on the Access to Bioloical Resources In terms of regulations, Taiwan's existing management style of the access to biological resources is similar to that of the US and the EU. It refers to the existing regulations on environmental protection and conservation, and evaluates from the perspective of environmental protection to control and manage the exploitation and application of the related biological resources. These regulations include the Wildlife Conservation Act, theNational Park Law, the Forestry Act, the Cultural Heritage Preservation Act, and the Aboriginal Basic Act. The paragraphs below describe the contents of the acts mentioned that are related to the access to biological resources. 1 、 Wildlife Conservation Act According to the Wildlife Conservation Act, the Protected Species and the products made of cannot be hunted, traded, owned, imported, exported, raised, bred, and processed unless the number of protected wildlife has exceeded the amount the environment permits, or carry the objectives of academic research and education with the permits of central or regional authorities. As for the hunting of General Wildlife, pre-application and approval is needed with the exception of projects based on the objectives of academic research or education. In addition, the import and export of the living wildlife and the products of Protected Wildlife are restricted to the condition of being permitted by management authority. With respect to the import and export of living Protected Wildlife, Academic research institutions and colleagues are the only person who can seek for the approval of management authority before they proceed. 2 、 National Park Law The design and management of Taiwan's national parks are based on the regulations listed in the National Park Law with the purpose of protecting our country's exclusive natural scenery, wildlife and historical spots. Based on the properties and the nature of resources, the national park management structures the preserved area into general control area, playground and resting area, spot of historical interest, special landmark area, and ecological protection area. Ecological protection area refers to the areas where the natural surroundings, creatures, the society they live and propagate are strictly protected only for the research of ecology. According to the regulation of National Park Law, inside the national park area, it is prohibited to hunt animals, fish, take off flowers or trees, not to mention the behaviours that are prohibited by the management authority. Exceptions are made based on the conditions of preserved areas and for the research purposes. In the general control area or resting area, the national park authority allows fishing or other activities agreed by the authority. However, these activities are prohibited in the preserved area of historical interest, special landmark area, and ecological protection area. To suit special purposes, in the special landmark area or ecological protection area, collection of specimens is allowed subject to the approval of authority. Under the purpose of academic research, better management of public safety, and special management of national park, the Ministry of the Interior will permit the collection of specimen. However, to enter the ecological protection area, one must obtain the permission of authority. 3 、 Forestry Act To protect the forest resources and to maximize the public welfare and economic effectiveness, some of the properties are classified as forestry land and being managed by authority. Based on the Forestry Act, management authority has to restrict the area of cutting timber and to identify the area or period of restricted digging of greensward, tree roots, and grass roots, based on the condition of the forest. In addition, to maintain the current ecological environment in the forest, and to preserve the diversity of species, identification of natural preserved area is needed inside the forestland. The entrance and exit of human and vehicles are controlled based on the nature of the resources inside the preserve area. Unless obtaining the approval from the management authority, not a single activity of damaging, logging or digging soil, stones, greensward and roots is allowed. Furthermore, any unauthorized activity of collecting specimen inside the forest recreation area and natural reserve will be fined. Collecting flowers and plants in these areas, or trespassing the natural reserve will also be fined. Only the activities taken by the aborigines to sustain their living or accommodate their customs are not restricted. 4 、 Cultural Heritage Preservation Act The objectives of setting up the Cultural Heritage Preservation Act are to preserve and apply the cultural resources, to enrich the spiritual lives of citizens, and to add glory to the existing diverse cultures. The Cultural Heritage Preservation Act classifies the natural landscape and scenery as cultural assets. Vistas of Natural Culture refer to the natural areas, landforms, plants and mineral which contain the values of preservation. It can be further grouped into natural preserved area and natural monuments. Since the natural monuments include the unusual plants and mineral, it is connected to the management of biological resources. According to the Cultural Heritage Preservation Act, unless approved by the management authority, it is prohibited to collect, log, destroy the plants or bio resources classified as natural monuments or trespass into the area of natural preserve. For the purposes of academic research, or for the memorial ceremony of aboriginal custom, research institute and the aborigines can collect the natural monuments without the approval of authority. 5 、 Aboriginal Basic Act To protect the basic rights of the aborigines, and to sustain and develop the aboriginal society, the Aboriginal Basic Act was designed and enacted. The government not only admits the aborigine's rights in lands and natural resources, but also permits the non-profit behaviour such as hunting of wildlife, colleting of wild plants and fungi for the objective of complying with traditional culture, ceremony or private uses. In addition, the Aboriginal Basic Act provides the requirement of Prior Informed Consent (PIC) to require government or private individual to inform the aborigines before they proceed with land development, resource exploitation, ecological preservation, and academic research in the land where the aborigines live. They need to consult and obtain the aborigines' agreement or participation, and to share the related interests derived from this project. In the case of restricting the aborigine's right of the use of land or natural resources by law, the government,shall consult with the aborigines or the tribe and reach the agreement. When the government wish to design and establish national park, national scenic area, forestry area, ecological protection area, recreational area, or other resource management authorities, the government should obtain the agreement from the local aborigines and to build up the co-management mechanism.

Analyzing the Framwork of the Regulation「Act For The Development of Biotech And New Pharmaceuticals Industry」in Taiwan

Taiwan Government passed The「Act for the Development of Biotech and New Pharmaceuticals Industry」for supporting the biopharmaceutical industry. The purpose of the Act is solely for biopharmaceutical industry, and building the leading economic force in Taiwan. To fulfill this goal, the Act has enacted regulations concerning funding, taxation and recruitment especially for the biopharmaceutical industry. The Act has been seen as the recent important law in the arena of upgrading industry regulation on the island. It is also a rare case where single legislation took place for particular industry. After the Act came into force, the government has promulgated further regulations to supplement the Act, including Guidance for MOEA-Approved Biotech and New Pharmaceuticals Company Issuing Stock Certificate, Deductions on Investments in R&D and Personnel Training of Biotech and New Pharmaceuticals Company, Guidance for Deduction Applicable to Shareholders of Profit-Seeking Enterprises -Biotech and New Pharmaceuticals Company etc. The following discussions are going to introduce the Act along with related incentive measures from an integrated standpoint. 1 、 Scope of Application According to Article 3 of the Act, 「Biotech and New Pharmaceuticals Industry」 refers to the industry that deals in New Rugs and High-risk Medical devices used by human beings, animals, and plants; 「Biotech and New Pharmaceuticals Company」 refers to a company in the Biotech and New Pharmaceuticals Industry that is organized and incorporated in accordance with the Company Act and engages in the research, development, and manufacture of new drugs and high-risk medical devices. Thus, the Act applies to company that conducts research and manufacture product in new drug or high-risk medical devices for human and animal use. Furthermore, to become a Biotech and New Pharmaceuticals Company stipulated in the Act, the Company must receive letter of approval to establish as a Biotech and New Pharmaceuticals Company valid for five years. Consequently, company must submit application to the authority for approval by meeting the following requirements: (1) Companies that conduct any R&D activities or clinical trials must receive permission, product registration, or proof of manufacture for such activities from a competent authority. However, for those conducted these activities outside the country will not apply. (2) When applied for funding for the previous year or in the same year, the expense on R&D in the previous year exceeds 5% of the total net revenue within the same year; or the expenses exceeds 10% of the total capital of the company. (3) Hired at least five R&D personnel majored in biotechnology. For New Drug and High-Risk Medical Device are confined in specific areas. New Drug provided in the Act refers to a drug that has a new ingredient, a new therapeutic effect or a new administration method as verified by the central competent authorities. And High-Risk Medical Device refers to a type of Class III medical devices implanted into human bodies as verified by the central competent authorities. Therefore, generic drug, raw materials, unimplanted medical device, and medical device are not qualified as type III, are all not within the scope of the Act and are not the subject matter the Act intends to reward. 2 、 Tax Benefits Article 5, 6 and 7 provided in the Act has followed the footsteps of Article 6 and 8 stipulated of the Statute, amending the rules tailored to the biopharmaceutical industry, and provided tax benefits to various entities as 「Biotech and New Pharmaceuticals Company」, 「Investors of Biotech and New Pharmaceuticals Industry」, 「Professionals and Technology Investors」. (1) Biotech and New Pharmaceuticals Company In an effort to advance the biopharmaceutical industry, alleviate financial burden of the companies and strengthen their R&D capacity. The Act has provided favorable incentive measures in the sector of R&D and personnel training. According to Article 5: 「For the purpose of promoting the Biotech and New Pharmaceuticals Industry, a Biotech and New Pharmaceuticals Company may, for a period of five years from the time it is subject to profit-seeking enterprise income tax payable, enjoy a reduction in its corporate income tax payable, for up to 35% of the total funds invested in research and development (R&D) and personnel training each year.」 Consequently, company could benefit through tax deduction and relieve from the stress of business operation. Moreover, in supporting Biotech and New Pharmaceutical Company to proceed in R&D and personnel training activities, the Act has set out rewards for those participate in ongoing R&D and training activities. As Article 5 provided that」 If the R&D expenditure of a particular year exceeds the average R&D expenditure of the previous two years, or if the personnel training expenditure of a particular year exceeds the average personnel training expenditure of the pervious two years, 50% of the exceed amount in excess of the average may be used to credit against the amount of profit-seeking enterprise income tax payable. 「However, the total amount of investment credited against by the payable corporate income tax in each year shall not exceed 50% of the amount of profit-seeking enterprise income tax payable by a Biotech and New Pharmaceuticals Company in a year, yet this restriction shall not apply to the amount to be offset in the last year of the aforementioned five-year period. Lastly, Article 5 of the Act shall not apply to Biotech and New Pharmaceutical Company that set up headquarters or branches outside of Taiwan. Therefore, to be qualified for tax deduction on R&D and personnel training, the headquarters or branches of the company must be located in Taiwan. (2) Investors of Biotech and New Pharmaceuticals Company To raise funding, expand business development, and attract investor continuing making investments, Article 6 of the Act has stated that 「In order to encourage the establishment or expansion of Biotech and New Pharmaceuticals Companies, a profit-seeking enterprise that subscribes for the stock issued by a Biotech and New Pharmaceuticals Company at the time of the latter's establishment or subsequent expansion; and has been a registered shareholder of the Biotech and New Pharmaceuticals Company for a period of 3 years or more, may, for a period of five years from the time it is subject to corporate income tax, enjoy a reduction in its profit-seeking enterprise income tax payable for up to 20% of the total amount of the price paid for the subscription of shares in such Biotech and New Pharmaceuticals Company.」 Yet 「If the afore-mentioned profit-seeking enterprise is a venture capital company (「VC」), such VC corporate shareholders may, for a period of five years from the fourth anniversary year of the date on which the VC becomes a registered shareholder of the subject Biotech and New Pharmaceuticals Company, enjoy a reduction in their profit-seeking enterprise income tax payable based on the total deductible amount enjoyed by the VC under Paragraph 1 hereof and the shareholders' respective shareholdings in the VC.」 The government enacted this regulation to encourage corporations and VC to invest in biotech and new pharmaceutical company, and thus provide corporate shareholders with 20% of profit-seeking enterprise income tax payable deduction, and provide VC corporate shareholders tax deduction that proportion to its shareholdings in the VC. (3) Top Executives and Technology Investors Top Executives refer to those with biotechnology background, and has experience in serving as officer of chief executive (CEO) or manager; Technology Investors refer to those acquire shares through exchange of technology. As biopharmaceutical industry possesses a unique business model that demands intensive technology, whether top executives and technology investors are willing to participate in a high risk business and satisfy the needs of industry becomes a critical issue. Consequently, Article 7 of the Act stated that 「In order to encourage top executives and technology investors to participate in the operation of Biotech and New Pharmaceuticals Companies and R&D activities, and to share their achievements, new shares issued by a Biotech and New Pharmaceuticals Company to top executives and technology investors (in return of their knowledge and technology) shall be excluded from the amount of their consolidated income or corporate income of the then current year for taxation purposes; provided, however, that if the title to the aforesaid shares is transferred with or without consideration, or distributed as estate, the total purchase price or the market value of the shares at the time of transfer as a gift or distribution as estate shall be deemed income generated in that tax year and such income less the acquisition cost shall be reported in the relevant income tax return.」 Additionally, 「For the title transfer of shares under the preceding paragraph, the Biotech and New Pharmaceuticals Company concerned shall file a report with the local tax authorities within thirty 30 days from the following day of the title transfer.」 Purpose of this regulation is to attract top executives and technology personnel for the company in long-term through defer taxation. Moreover, the Biotech and New Pharmaceutical Company usually caught in a prolong period of losses, and has trouble financing through issuing new shares, as stipulated par value of each share cannot be less than NTD $10.Thus, in order to offer top executive and technology investors incentives and benefits under such circumstances, Article 8 has further provided that」Biotech and New Pharmaceutical Companies may issue subscription warrants to its top executives and technology investors, provided that the proposal for the issuance of the aforesaid subscription warrants shall pass resolution adopted by a majority votes of directors attended by at least two-thirds (2/3) of all the directors of the company; and be approved by the competent authorities. Holders of the subscription warrants may subscribe a specific number of shares at the stipulated price. The amount of stipulated price shall not be subject to the minimum requirement, i.e. par value of the shares, as prescribed under Article 140 of the Company Act. Subscription of the shares by exercising the subscription warrant shall be subject to income tax in accordance with Article 7 hereof. if a Biotech and New Pharmaceutical Company issue new shares pursuant to Article 7 hereof, Article 267 of the Company Act shall not apply. The top executives and technology investors shall not transfer the subscription warrant acquired to pursuant to this Article.」 These three types of tax benefits are detailed incentive measures tailor to the biopharmaceutical industry. However, what is noteworthy is the start date of the benefits provided in the Act. Different from the Statue, the Act allows company to enjoy these benefits when it begins to generate profits, while the Statute provides company tax benefits once the authority approved its application in the current year. Thus, Biotech and New Pharmaceuticals Company enjoys tax benefits as the company starts to make profit. Such approach reflects the actual business operation of the industry, and resolves the issue of tax benefits provided in the Statue is inapplicable to the biopharmaceutical industry. 3 、 Technical Assistance and Capital Investment Due to the R&D capacity and research personnel largely remains in the academic circle, in order to encourage these researchers to convert R&D efforts into commercial practice, the government intends to enhance the collaboration among industrial players, public institutions, and the research and academic sectors, to bolster the development of Biotech and New Pharmaceuticals Company. However, Article 13 of Civil Servants Service Act prohibits officials from engaging in business operation, the Act lifts the restriction on civil servants. According to Article 10 of the Act provided that」For a newly established Biotech and New Pharmaceuticals Company, if the person providing a major technology is a research member of the government research organization, such person may, with the consent of the government research organization, acquired 10% or more of the shares in the Biotech and New Pharmaceuticals Company at the time of its establishment, and act as founder, director, or technical adviser thereof. In such case, Article 13 of the Civil Servants Service Act shall not apply. And the research organization and research member referred to thereof shall be defined and identified by the Executive Yuan, in consultation with the Examination Yuan.」 This regulation was enacted because of the Civil Servants Services Act provided that public officials are not allowed to be corporate shareholders. However, under certain regulations, civil servants are allowed to be corporate shareholders in the sector of agriculture, mining, transportation or publication, as value of the shares cannot exceed 10% of the total value of the company, and the civil servant does not served in the institution. In Taiwan, official and unofficial research institution encompasses most of the biotechnology R&D capacity and research personnel. If a researcher is working for a government research institution, he would be qualified as a public servant and shall be governed by the Civil Servants Service Act. As a result of such restriction, the Act has lifted the restriction and encouraged these researchers to infuse new technologies into the industry. At last, for advancing the development of the industry, Article 11 also provided that 」R&D personnel of the academic and research sectors may, subject to the consent of their employers, served as advisors or consultants for a Biotech and New Pharmaceuticals Company.」 4 、 Other Regulations For introducing and transferring advanced technology in support of the biopharmaceutical industry, Article 9 stated that 「Organization formed with government funds to provide technical assistance shall provide appropriate technical assistance as may be necessary.」 Besides technical assistance, government streamlines the review process taken by various regulatory authorities, in order to achieve an improved product launch process result in faster time-to-market and time-to profit. As Article 12 provided that 「the review and approval of field test, clinical trials, product registration, and others, the central competent authorities shall establish an open and transparent procedure that unifies the review system.」

Innovative Practice of Israel's Government Procurement

Innovative Practice of Israel's Government Procurement   Government procurement is an important pillar of government services. Because of the huge number of government purchases, government procurement management play an important role in promoting public sector efficiency and building citizenship. Well-designed government procurement systems also help to achieve policy such as environmental protection, innovation, start-ups and the development of small and medium-sized enterprises.   Nowadays, countries in the world, especially OECD countries, have been widely practiced with innovative procurement to stimulate innovation and start-ups, and call Innovation procurement can deliver solutions to challenges of public interest and ICTs can play a major role in this. However, in the OECD countries, in addition to the advanced countries that have been developed, many developing countries have also used government procurement to stimulate national R & D and innovation with remarkable results. Israel is one of the world's leading technology innovation centers, one of the most innovative economies in the world, continues to leverage its own strengths, support of technology entrepreneurship and unique environment, an international reputation in the high-tech industry, the spirit of technological innovation and novelty.   Government procurement is a core element of the activities of Israeli government, agreement with suppliers and compliance with the Mandatory Tenders Law. The main challenge is how to ensure efficiency and maintain government performance while ensuring an equitable and transparent procurement process. Israel’s Mandatory Tenders Law has shown the central role played by the Israeli Supreme Court in creating and developing this law, even in the absence of any procurement legislation, based instead on general principles of administrative law. Once the project of creating a detailed body of public tendering law had been completed, and the legislator was about to step in, the Supreme Court was prepared to step out and transferring the jurisdiction to lower courts. The Knesset passed the Mandatory Tenders Law, and based on it the Government issued the various tendering regulations. Besides, Israel's various international agreements on government procurement, mainly GPA and other bilateral international agreements such as free trade agreements with Mexico and Colombia and free trade agreements and memoranda of understanding with the United States. The practical significance of these commitments can only be understood on the backdrop of Israel’s domestic preference and offset policies. These policies were therefore discussed and analyzed as they apply when none of the international agreements applies.   The Challenge Tenders "How to solve the problem of overcrowding in the emergency department and the internal medicine department?" is the first of a series of "problem solicitations" released by the Israeli Ministry of Health which seeks to find a digital solution to the public health system problem, questions from the government while avoiding preconceived prejudices affect the nature of the solution, allowing multiple innovative ideas from different fields to enter the health system, make fair and transparent judgments about the ideal solution to the problem. In order to ensure transparency and integrity, equality, efficiency and competition in the decision-making process, the tender proposed by the Israeli Ministry of Health defines a two-stage tender process. The Ministry of Health of Israel, in order to improve the quality of medical care, shorten the waiting time for hospitalized patients, protect the dignity of patients and their families with patients as its center, and ensure their rights, while alleviating the burden of hospital staff, so as to pass the targeted treatment areas reduce the gap between various residential areas. The Israeli government deals with these issues through challenging tenders and offers a digital solution combined with innovative ideas. The initiative proposed through the development of public service projects can raise the level of public services in the country and help the government to reduce costs and achieve the purpose of promoting innovation with limited conceptual, technical and financial capabilities. In addition, due to the online operation of the challenging tender process throughout the entire process, fair and transparent procedures can be ensured, while public-private partnerships are encouraged to facilitate the implementation of the implementation plan.

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