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Written Question
Horizon Europe
Wednesday 23rd February 2022

Asked by: Lord Stevens of Birmingham (Crossbench - Life peer)

Question to the Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy:

To ask Her Majesty's Government by what date they expect British universities to have a definitive answer as to whether the UK has succeeded in formally associating with the Horizon Europe research and innovation programme.

Answered by Lord Callanan - Parliamentary Under Secretary of State (Department for Energy Security and Net Zero)

The UK stands ready to formalise our association to Horizon Europe at the earliest opportunity. At the recent EU-UK Specialised Committee the EU confirmed they were unwilling to move on UK association due to broader political issues. We continue to push the EU, by whatever means possible, to formalise our association but the EU is not living up to the commitments it made in 2020.

We recognise that delays by the EU have led to uncertainty for researchers, businesses and innovators based in the UK, including British Universities. To provide reassurance the Government has guaranteed funding for the first wave of eligible, successful applicants to Horizon Europe.

Given the EU’s persistence in delaying our association, it is only right and responsible that we are prepared for all outcomes, including one where we are not able to associate. Our priority is to support UK researchers and provide immediate stability and continuity for the sector. To this end, we are developing a coherent, compelling and high-quality programme to provide the fellowships, collaborations and industry engagement so valued in Horizon.