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Budget agreement brings boost for Horizon 2020

Negotiators have reached a provisional agreement on the EU’s 2019 budget at the second attempt, with more funding for R&D than was originally proposed.

Political agreement on the budget was secured on 4 December. Negotiators settled on €12.3 billion for the Horizon 2020 R&D programme, up from €12.2bn in the original proposal and a 2018 budget of €11.2bn.

R&D funding was the primary cause of a breakdown in negotiations on the first attempt to pass a budget, according to the EU institutions. The European Parliament had wanted to roll over €400 million of unspent Horizon 2020 funds from 2017, but national governments in the Council of the EU were not keen on that approach. Negotiators then suggested reducing the figure to €100m as a compromise. In the end the budget was boosted by about this amount, but not by rolling over money from 2017.

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