Insights Competition and Markets Authority launches initial review of artificial intelligence (AI) models and issues call for evidence


The CMA has opened an initial review of competition and consumer protection considerations in the development and use of AI foundation models.

As the CMA explains, foundation models, which include large language models and generative AI, that have emerged over the past five years, have the potential to transform much of what people and businesses do. To ensure that innovation in AI continues in a way that benefits consumers, businesses and the UK economy, the Government has asked regulators, including the CMA, to think about how the innovative development and deployment of AI can be supported against six overarching principles:

  1. safety;
  2. security and robustness;
  3. appropriate transparency and explain-ability;
  4. fairness;
  5. accountability and governance; and
  6. contestability and redress.

In line with the Government’s AI White Paper and the CMA’s role to support open, competitive markets, the CMA says that its review will seek to understand how foundation models are developing and produce an assessment of the conditions and principles that will best guide the development of foundation models and their use in the future.

The initial review will:

  • examine how the competitive markets for foundation models and their use could evolve;
  • explore what opportunities and risks these scenarios could bring for competition and consumer protection; and
  • produce guiding principles to support competition and protect consumers as AI foundation models develop.

The CMA notes that the development of AI touches upon several important issues, including safety, security, copyright, privacy, and human rights, as well as the ways markets work. Many of these issues are being considered by the Government or other regulators, so this initial review will focus on the questions the CMA is best placed to address, i.e. what are the likely implications of the development of AI foundation models for competition and consumer protection?

The CMA is seeking views and evidence from stakeholders and welcomes submissions by 2 June 2023.

Following evidence gathering and analysis, the CMA will publish a report which sets out its findings in September 2023. To read the CMA’s press release in full and for a link to the CMA’s launch document, which also contains information on how to submit views and evidence, click here.