The UK to be excluded from participating in EU Horizon calls in quantum

Due to the lack of reciprocity, the UK now finds itself excluded from EU quantum projects which it previously had access to. UK companies which were awarded grants can’t participate, and projects may be scrapped if UK participants cannot be replaced.

The EU moved to exclude the UK from Horizon Europe calls on sensitive quantum projects due to doubts over the UK`s eagerness to provide EU researchers with access to UK quantum programmes and to comply with intellectual property rules.

Initially, the European Commission decided to open up 2021–2022 calls to certain UK entities if they gave reassurances they would protect EU strategic interests, assets, autonomy and security, and respected reciprocity and intellectual property conditions. After assessing the proposals submitted by the UK, the EU has excluded quantum technologies companies that applied to take part.

‘Despite earlier statements from the UK side, when the moment of verification came, the EU realised that these reciprocity conditions were not on the table, and we got to the point where the Commission was not seeing enough evidence for an inclusion’, said Tommaso Calarco, director of the Institute for Quantum Control in Jülich, and one of the coordinators of the Quantum Flagship, a multi-billion EU Commission research initiative.