Statement on UK trigger of Article 50 of Lisbon Treaty

The UK government has formally notified the European Union of its intention to leave by triggering Article 50 of the Treaty of Lisbon (2009). The timeframe for negotiations on the terms and conditions of Brexit is expected to take two years.

During these years, the UK will remain a full member of the European Union, with all rights and duties. This gives us reasons to believe that Brexit poses no immediate threat to the funding of any of our activities in the UK, and nothing will change in terms of UK participation in the EIT community.

Climate-KIC was established as a pan-European project, not limited to participants of EU/EEA member states. We remain fully committed to our activities in the UK, and to the wider organisation’s continued success in a European context. We will work with government authorities in London and Brussels and with the European Institute of Innovation and Technology, our main funding partner, to ensure that cooperation continues and that Climate-KIC remains a pan-European funded partnership.

We are committed to nurturing innovation from across the UK and the Republic of Ireland and have recently opened a new location in Edinburgh to extend Climate-KIC’s work to Scotland.

We also appreciate the UK government’s Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy (BEIS) announcement that they would review all Horizon 2020 funded programmes, with a view of offering guarantees for finance for any pre-existing Horizon 2020 awards, beyond the UK’s departure from the European Union.

Another important element of our strategy is to tap into broader and more diverse sources of funding, including alternative UK, national and regional research/climate funds and joint initiatives with existing and new partners. Climate-KIC as a whole is already undertaking a number of activities to diversify its revenue away from EIT funding and advance financial self-sustainability. The situation in the UK does therefore not represent a significant departure from the status of other geographies within Climate-KIC.