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Provisional agreement reached on Horizon Europe research programme

Thursday 21 March 2019

The EU institutions have reached a partial political agreement, subject to formal approval by the European Parliament and Council, on the Horizon Europe research pogramme (2021-2027). Horizon Europe will build on the current research and programme (Horizon 2020), continuing with the European Research Council (ERC) and the Marie Skłodowska-Curie fellowships and exchanges, as well as the Joint Research Centre (JRC), the Commission's science and knowledge service. The programme will contain five mission areas and eight partnership areas. The specific missions and the various public-private and intergovernmental partnerships will be finalised by the commission in its strategic planning stage, before being submitted to the council for approval.

The mission areas will be:

  1. Adapting to climate change, including societal transformation
  2. Cancer
  3. Healthy oceans, seas, coastal and inland waters
  4. Climate-neutral and smart cities
  5. Soil health and food

The eight partnership areas will be:

  1. Faster development and safer use of health innovations for European patients, and global health.
  2. Advancing key digital and enabling technologies and their use, including but not limited to novel technologies such as artificial intelligence, photonics and quantum technologies.
  3. European leadership in metrology, including an integrated metrology system.
  4. Accelerate competitiveness, safety and environmental performance of EU air traffic, aviation and rail.
  5. Sustainable, inclusive and circular bio-based solutions.
  6. Hydrogen and sustainable energy storage technologies with lower environmental footprint and less energy-intensive production.
  7. Clean, connected, cooperative, autonomous and automated solutions for future mobility demands of people and goods.
  8. Innovative and R&D intensive small and medium-sized enterprises.

A new body, the European Innovation Council (EIC), has also been established which aims to provide breakthrough technological innovations from the laboratory to market application, as well and helping start-ups and SMEs scale up ideas.Synergies with other future EU programmes and policies will be subject to further discussions, dependent on the progress made in relation to proposals within the EU's long-term budget. Provisions on international association agreements will also be subject to further discussions. The preliminary political agreement reached by the European Parliament, Council and Commission is now subject to formal approval by the European Parliament and Council. Horizon Europe's budgetary aspects are subject to the overall agreement on the EU's next long-term budget, the Multi-annual Financial Framework (MFF).