Scientists in the UK have tried to keep their membership in the project, but despite an agreement to include them in the Trade and Cooperation Agreement (TCA) in December, it now obvious that associate membership in Horizon Europe has not yet been approved till date.
“It’s been the best part of a year and British research institutions remain frozen out of key projects and funding despite agreement on participation,” said Sir Bill, the Tory MP for Stone in Staffordshire.
“With each passing day the opportunities are missed, British institutions are left high and dry while science marches on without them and the returns on our financial contribution edge lower,” he added.
However, Sir Bill warned, “This needs to be addressed swiftly, so we’re calling on the government to lay out the steps it is taking to ensure UK participation is formalised.”
Last week, Mariya Gabriel, the European Union’s Commissioner for Innovation and Research, stated that the UK would be unable to join the program until the Northern Ireland issue was resolved.
“Association is a thematic subject, and I am confident that we are ready to tackle it as soon as possible, but transversal issues need to be tackled first. I think that it is important on our side to confirm our opinion to advance on association, but only after the framework is agreed by both sides,” Ms Gabriel told ScienceBusiness.