EU institutions reach provisional agreement on Horizon Europe
In the early hours of 20 March 2019, the EU institutions reached a partial political agreement on the next Research Framework Programme Horizon Europe. The agreement is subject to formal approval by the European Parliament and Council. The European Commission had presented its proposal on Horizon Europe on 7 June 2018, followed by months of intensive negotiations in Council (with a Partial General Approach (PGA) on the Horizon Europe Regulation having been reached on 30 November 2018 under the Austrian EU Council Presidency), and with the European Parliament (EP).
The provisional deal now reached on Horizon Europe and its specific programme will allow the European Commission to start preparing for the implementation of Horizon Europe, as a list of five areas for research missions (adaptation to climate change, cancer, healthy oceans, climate-neutral and smart cities, food and soil health) and eight institutionalised partnerships is part of the agreement. The agreement does not include the budget for the programme, as this is part of the negotiations on the 2021-2027 Multiannual Financial Framework (MFF) - the EC proposal for the Horizon Europe budget is € 94.6 billion, while the EP is asking for € 120 billion (in 2018 prices). Neither does the agreement include non-EU country participation or synergies with other EU programmes - these will also be decided on at a later stage.
The provisional deal will now have to be formally adopted by the Council and by the EP's Committee for Industry, Research and Energy (ITRE) and Plenary. Once the Council has agreed on the size of the overall budget, the Council and the next EP will negotiate on the outstanding issues related to Horizon Europe. The Commission will now start preparing Horizon Europe's implementation in order to have the first draft work programmes published in time for the programme's launch on 1 January 2021.
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