The Commission has signed agreements for closer cooperation in research and innovation with the Western Balkans – Bosnia and Herzegovina, Kosovo, Montenegro, North Macedonia and Serbia – as well as with Georgia and Israel. For the period 2021-2027, they have been granted association status to Horizon Europe, Europe’s €95.5 billion research and innovation programme. Researchers, innovators and research entities established in these countries can now participate, under the same conditions as entities from the EU Member States. Mariya Gabriel, Commissioner for Innovation, Research, Culture, Education and Youth, said: “I am very pleased that we have moved forward with our association agreements with many more partners. Association to Horizon Europe is of mutual benefit, for the EU and for our partners, enabling tighter cooperation to boost our green and digital agendas, as well as to attract investment in research and innovation and create jobs and growth.” Association to Horizon Europe supports the ‘Global Approach to Research and Innovation’ and reconfirms Europe’s commitment to a level of global openness needed to drive excellence, pool resources for faster scientific progress and develop vibrant innovation ecosystems. Except for Kosovo, which is new to the programme, the Western Balkan partners have been associated to Horizon 2020, the previous EU research and innovation programme (2014-2020). More information is available here. Since 2016, Georgia has been associated to Horizon 2020 and multiple success stories resulted from this cooperation in areas like health and research infrastructures. More details are here. Israel has been associated to the EU Framework Programmes for research and innovation since 1996 with very high participation rates and multiple success stories. More information is here.
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