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Budget woes again threaten to delay Horizon 2020

MEPs will not vote on the EU budget for 2014-20 this week, meaning that the European Parliament will not be able to debate the Horizon 2020 programme as planned.

The postponement has sparked fears that the budget framework—on which Horizon 2020 depends—will not be in place by 1 January. Approval of the seven-year multiannual financial framework is needed before the legislation on Horizon 2020 can be signed off, meaning there will be a last-minute scramble to launch the first calls for proposals, which are scheduled for 11 December.

On 17 October, leaders of the political groups in the Parliament announced that they would not vote on the multiannual financial framework during a plenary session in Strasbourg on 22 October. The decision was made following a disagreement with the Council of Ministers about the 2013 budget, for which the Commission wants an additional €3.9 billion to fund programmes including Framework 7.

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