As the negotiations on Switzerland’s association to Horizon 2020 could not be completed, Switzerland has to be considered a non-associated country
Following the 9 February referendum, Switzerland declined to sign a protocol extending free movement to Croatians. The EU responded by breaking off negotiations on the country’s participation as an “associate member” of Horizon 2020.
In a statement issued on 26 February, following a debate in the European Parliament, the commission says negotiations on Switzerland’s participation as an “associate country” in Horizon 2020 “could not be completed”.
In the framework of Horizon 2020, Swiss will be considered a “third country”, at least for 2014. No modifications concerning other fundings, it will be part of Eureka and will take part in Eurostars.
Associate countries are non-EU members who participate in European programmes as full members in return for accepting EU rules, including on the free movement of people. Switzerland was an associate country in previous framework programmes and was very successful.
To be considered as “third country” means its universities and businesses can still participate in Horizon 2020 programmes, but will not automatically be eligible for funding and will not count towards the minimum number of participants required for a project.
More information on Swiss participation in Horizon 2020 available here