Debates between Lord Mair and Lord Callanan during the 2019 Parliament

Horizon Europe: UK Participation

Debate between Lord Mair and Lord Callanan
Tuesday 31st January 2023

(1 year, 3 months ago)

Lords Chamber
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Lord Callanan Portrait Lord Callanan (Con)
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I cannot comment on the protocol negotiations in detail. As far as I am aware, they are going well. I realise that my noble friend wants to link the two issues, but they are entirely separate. They are entirely separate agreements. Justifying the EU’s unreasonable position on this helps no one.

Lord Mair Portrait Lord Mair (CB)
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My Lords, time is running out. Every university and research organisation in the country will provide examples of projects that are now in limbo. They are not being included in new EU projects because they are seen as a risk. Last week the Science Minister, George Freeman, announced that if the UK does not associate to Horizon Europe, the Government will be ready with a “comprehensive alternative” to ensure strong international collaboration opportunities—the so-called plan B—both transitional and in the longer term. How soon will more details, especially for the longer term, be announced? Does the Minister agree that there is an urgency to ending the uncertainty that is so damaging to our universities and research organisations?

Lord Callanan Portrait Lord Callanan (Con)
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I agree with the noble Lord. There is a limit to how long this period of limbo can go on. We have provided guarantees to researchers, and we are funding them in the meantime. The time is approaching when we will need to make a final decision on this.