After the threat of Article 16, the EU blinks first: VDL promises an £80 billion research project that will be “open to the world.”
EVEN AFTER British scientists were barred from participating in the £80 billion Horizon Europe research initiative due to the ongoing Article 16 issue, the European Commission has sworn to keep it “open to the world.”
The UK’s participation in the research and innovation program is expected to be “finalized in due time,” according to a Commission official. Following the United Kingdom’s exit from the European Union (EU), ministers agreed to work with the bloc to formalize the UK’s participation in the program. As a result, UK-based scientists and innovators would be able to take advantage of the program’s resources and financial opportunities.
However, with the Northern Ireland Protocol still hanging in the balance, there has been a lot of ambiguity around this collaboration.
Lord David Frost, the UK’s leading Brexit minister, warned earlier this week that the government was willing to cut Horizon Europe funding in order to focus on local research and development.
“Of course, in its place, we will put together a local research program for our own sciences and universities,” he stated.
The remarks came after reports that the government was ready to pull out all the brakes and invoke Article 16.
If the Northern Ireland Protocol’s Article 16 provision is shown to be causing more harm than benefit, any side of the dispute can implement “safeguard” measures to preserve national interests.
It’s thought that invoking Article 16 would empower either party to suspend portions of the NI Protocol.
Horizon Europe is now “by default open to the world,” according to the European Commission, and serves as a tool for strengthening international cooperation.
“Horizon Europe will encourage international participation in a variety of ways, including topics that encourage or require international cooperation, joint or coordinated calls, special EU funding for participants from non-associated third countries, twinning activities with entities from non-associated non-EU countries, and topics that contribute to the implementation of multilateral or bilateral agreements or initiatives,” according to a Commission spokesperson.
Armenia announced on Friday that it had teamed up with the EU to become an associate member of Horizon Europe.
“I welcome Armenia to our Horizon Europe program,” said Mariya Gabriel, Commissioner for Innovation, Research, Culture, Education, and Youth. Armenia’s involvement in the previous Horizon 2020 initiative has steadily increased, and it has backed the acceleration of reforms in Armenia’s national research and innovation system. “Brinkwire Summary News”.