UK Government guidance on Horizon 2020 funding in a no deal Brexit scenario

The UK Government have recently published updated advice on funding under the Horizon 2020 programme if the UK withdraws from the EU without a deal. The advice states that although the UK Government is committed to delivering the Withdrawal Agreement that has already been negotiated with the EU, it is necessary to prepare for all eventualities, including that of a possible no deal Brexit. The advice is aimed at UK organisations who are in receipt of Horizon 2020 funding or who are bidding for this funding. Before the UK leaves the EU As the UK and the EU have agreed to extend Article 50 until 31 October 2019, the UK will continue to participate in Horizon 2020 as an EU Member State. During this extension period, the UK Government have advised that organisations and individuals in receipt of Horizon 2020 funding should continue their project activity in line with the existing terms and conditions set out in their EU grant agreement and should not terminate any agreement with the EU. Businesses and citizens should also remain aware that as set out in the Withdrawal Agreement the UK will continue to participate in the programmes financed by the current EU Budget until their closure, meaning that all EU funded programmes will be fully funded under the current 2014-2020 Multiannual Financial Framework. After the UK leaves the EU in a potential no deal scenario If the UK leaves the EU without a deal, UK organisations may not be able to access funding for Horizon 2020 projects after the exit date. However, the UK Chancellor has already announced in August and October of 2016 that the government will guarantee funding for competitively bid for EU projects that were submitted prior to the UK’s departure from the EU. This has since been extended to cover funding for successful bids where UK organisations are able to participate as a Third Country in competitive EU grant programmes. This extension runs from exit day until the end of 2020 and will apply for the lifetime of the projects. In the event of a ‘no deal’ scenario, UK researchers and businesses would be able to apply to and participate in all those Horizon 2020 calls open to Third Country participants from the date of exit, with funding provided via the extension to the guarantee. The government is now seeking discussions with the European Commission to agree the details of our continued participation as a Third Country. These discussions will include assurance of scenarios where UK participants lead a consortium and distribute funding to other participants. However, it should be noted that Third Country participation does not extend to some Horizon 2020 calls; these include European Research Council (ERC) grants, some Marie Sklodowska-Curie Actions and the SME instrument. The UK Government will issue further updates on Horizon 2020 no deal planning in due course.

Ingrid Green - Scotland Europa - NCP Services