The EU has come closer to adopting its next multiannual framework programme for research and innovation.
The German presidency of the Council reached a provisional political agreement with the European Parliament’s negotiators on the proposed regulation establishing Horizon Europe, the EU framework programme for research and innovation for the years 2021 to 2027.
The main elements contained in the provisionally agreed text include:
- Budgetary issues : these refer to the internal break-down of Horizon Europe’s overall budget, including additional funds (“tops-ups”) stemming from margins under the Multiannual Financial Framework (MFF) ceilings and from competition fines. The provisional agreement also specifies how funds under the EU recovery instrument entitled Next Generation EU should be made available;
- Synergies with other EU programmes : the negotiators agreed to bring most of synergies-related provisions into a single article and found common ground on how various other EU programmes should support and complement Horizon Europe;
- International cooperation and association of third countries : the provisional agreement strikes a balance between openness and attractiveness vis-à-vis international partners, on the one hand, and reciprocity and protection of the EU’s strategic interests, on the other. By way of example, it mentions respect of human rights as one of the specific criteria for the association of third countries to Horizon Europe.
The provisionally agreed text will be submitted to the Council’s permanent representatives committee for analysis on 18 December 2020. Following political endorsement by both the Council and the European Parliament, it will be the basis for the future adoption of the proposed regulation at second reading. The regulation cannot be formally adopted before the formal adoption of the EU’s MFF for 2021-2027.