EU and New Zealand conclude Horizon Europe association talks

horizon europe, new zealand, EU
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December 2022 saw negotiations finally and successfully concluded between the EU and New Zealand concerning Horizon Europe association

Formal relations between the EU and New Zealand concerning the R&D sector can be dated back to 2009 with the signature of cooperation in scientific and technological cooperation. This decade-old agreement provided the general framework for cooperation and acted as a forum for continuing discussions over the years.

Horizon Europe Association Agreements and ongoing cooperation

The signing of the association agreement is set to take place within 2023, pending the completion of all necessary validations on both sides.

According to the European Commission, it is expected that researchers and organisations in New Zealand will be able to participate in Pillar II of the Horizon Europe programme. Pillar II will be the most relevant and biggest collaborative part of the programme that is primarily focused on shared challenges including climate, energy and mobility, digital, industry and space, health, and more.

“With Horizon Europe we have redesigned our approach towards international cooperation in research and innovation”

The Commissioner for Innovation, Research, Culture, Education and Youth Mariya Gabriel, said: “With Horizon Europe we have redesigned our approach towards international cooperation in research and innovation, strengthening, even more, our ties with countries outside the geographical proximity of the EU that have a robust scientific and research track record.

“With a solid scientific base and more than half of New Zealand’s researchers having an active collaboration with a European partner, the country has been a trusted EU partner for many years now. Its future association to Horizon Europe will deepen our relation, foster innovation, and will further enable European researchers to benefit from the latest knowledge and some of the best talent worldwide.”

Promoting international cooperation through Horizon Europe

Traditionally, Horizon Europe cooperation has been offered by the Union to countries in its geographic proximity; however, this new association will enable New Zealand researchers and organisations to participate in the programme on equal terms with entities from the EU Members States.

Association to the EU’s Framework Programme on Research and Innovation is the closest form of international cooperation in science and technology between the Union and non-EU countries.

The agreement with New Zealand will be the first time association of a highly industrialised country outside Europe to the Union’s flagship programme for research and innovation.


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