The European Commission has started conducting a comprehensive review of the metaverse and generative AI markets to ensure that both remain competitive for participants. The move comes in response to the rapid growth seen across the industries.
VC investment in Artificial Intelligence in the EU was recorded at over €7.2 billion last year, while the European metaverse market saw as much as €11 billion.
EU Launches Review to Level the Playing Field in Next-Gen Tech
Given the growth, the European Commissioner for Competition, Margrethe Vestager, said in a statement Tuesday that it’s “fundamental that these new markets stay competitive, and that nothing stands in the way of businesses growing and providing the best and most innovative products to consumers.”
Vestager issued a Requests for Information (RFI) to participants in the respective markets, inviting them to share their opinions and experiences about the competition levels of both markets and also propose ideas on how antitrust regulations can sustain competitiveness.
“We are inviting businesses and experts to tell us about any competition issues that they may perceive in these industries whilst also closely monitoring AI partnerships to ensure they do not unduly distort market dynamics,” Vestager said.
EU to Scrutinise Microsoft and OpenAI Deal
Presently the Commission is currently reviewing Microsoft’s investment in OpenAI, the company behind ChatGPT, to determine whether the transaction qualifies for review under EU merger regulations.
Microsoft is reportedly the largest minority investor in OpenAI. In 2019, the tech company committed an initial $1 billion to the AI company and a multibillion-dollar investment last year. Some speculate that the EU’s review could lead to a formal investigation that could end with the deal unconditionally cleared, allowed with concessions from the companies or outrightly blocked.
The EU further stated that its assessment of AI and metaverse markets would also cover the impacts of some agreements that have been concluded between large digital market players and generative AI developers and providers on market dynamics.