Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and European Commission President Jose Manuel Barroso, this afternoon (Sunday, 8 June 2014), attended the signing ceremony on Israel's accession to Horizon 2020 - the EU Framework Programme for Research and Innovation. EU Ambassador to Israel Lars Faaborg-Andersen and Science, Technology and Space Minister Yaakov Peri signed the accession agreement for the EU and Israel, respectively.
Horizon 2020 is among the largest programs in the world for scientific and industrial cooperation; Israel will transfer approximately 140 million Euros per annum from the Science, Economy and other ministry budgets. Investments in previous EU plants have proven themselves: The relative return on Israeli investments in the plan is approximately 60%. Israel invested 535 million Euros in the seventh plan; Israeli bodies received 840 million Euros in grants, 579.5 million Euros of which were for university scientists. Under the plan, which ended last year, 1,197 projects - with the participation of 2,124 Israeli scientists from academia and industry - were approved.
The signing of the accession agreement today confirms Israel's status as a full partner in the plan. As of now, approximately 500 proposals with Israeli participants have been submitted. The proposals will be evaluated by September 2014 and the grant agreements will be signed by the end of the year.
Sources: Israeli Ministry of Foreign Affairs