SEA Europe welcomes the partial agreement reached between the European Parliament and the Council of the EU on Horizon Europe on 18 April. Horizon Europe is the next 7-years European Research and Innovation Funding Programme and is part of the EU’s proposal for a new EU budget for the period 2021 till 2027 (known as the Multi-Annual Financial Framework).
The partial agreement reached between the European Parliament and the Council of the EU is a key step in the inter-institutional decision-making process since it forms the basis for further shaping the content and the budget of Horizon Europe.
For SEA Europe, Horizon Europe is fundamental to allow the European maritime technology industry to stay ahead of its global competitors in terms of innovation and to remain a frontrunner in designing, developing and in maintaining global leadership in complex high-tech ships, platforms and advanced maritime equipment. These complex high-tech products are key in supporting the activities related to healthy oceans, seas, coastal areas and inland waters and thus in implementing the related mission of Horizon Europe.
In a first reaction, SEA Europe’s Secretary General, Christophe Tytgat, said:
“SEA Europe welcomes this partial agreement on Horizon Europe and particularly the fact that the cluster “climate change, energy and mobility” will be kept together. SEA Europe has lobbied very hard for this result since we believe that it will be the only way for the maritime technology sector to fully implement the Strategic Research Agenda of the Waterborne Technology Platform on greening of waterborne transport. SEA Europe is one of the major stakeholders of the Waterborne Technology Platform and fully shares the platform’s vision to make waterborne transport a zero-emission mode of transport by 2030 for newbuilt ships and barges and by 2050 for any ship types on any ship trades. To do so, there is a need to include waterborne transport in the programming of cross-sectoral missions and partnerships and SEA Europe therefore calls upon the EU Institutions, including Member States, to fully support such inclusion.”
After the election of a new European Parliament, there will still be a long way to go before Horizon Europe is finally set in stone. The budget and the terms for non-EU countries to participate in this programme will not be finalised until Member States have reached a unanimous agreement on the EU’s next Multiannual Financial Framework.