In a speech at the European Parliament, Jean-Claude Juncker discussed the future of Europe with António Costa, Prime Minister of Portugal, and doubling the current investment in research programmes.
The EU should aim to double its seven-year spending on research programmes from around €77bn in the current budget cycle to €160bn in the 2020s, according to the president of the European Commission, with the aim to create the best future for Europe and future generations.
In the speech Juncker said: “The Horizon 2020 research and innovation programme … is also a key programme for the growth and development of European companies.
“We are dedicating, ladies and gentlemen, currently €80bn to this programme, the one I just mentioned. If we decided to increase this amount to €120bn in the next financial framework, by 2040 this would create 420,000 additional jobs and increase GDP by 0.3%. If we went – I dream – up to €160bn, this would result in the creation of 650,000 jobs by 2040 and an increase in GDP of 0.5%.”
The president added that the commission needed to continue its work on the Energy Union, the Digital Union and the European Union whilst dedicating more money to research programmes: “If we did this – in fact, I think we should – the EU would become one of the world’s leading players in research and innovation.”
Horizon 2020 is the financial instrument implementing the Innovation Union, a Europe 2020 flagship initiative aimed at securing Europe’s global competitiveness. By linking research and innovation, the research programme is helping to achieve a sustainable Europe with its emphasis on excellent science.
- The current framework – Horizon 2020 – is the biggest EU research and innovation programme yet, with nearly €80bn of funding available over seven years;
- The goal is to ensure Europe produces world-class science and remove barriers to innovation; and
- It promises more breakthroughs, discoveries and world-firsts by taking great ideas from the lab to the market.
Framework Programme 9
Over the coming months, while maintaining a strong focus on the ongoing evaluation of Horizon 2020 and its last years of implementation, a new focus will be given to the preparation of FP9.
The proposal for the next research programme will be done in the context of the EU’s proposal for the next seven-year EU budget. The commission is due to present its full proposal for the 2021-2028 budget in May.