The government’s guarantee for EU-funded programmes if there’s no Brexit deal

Updated 29 October 2019

This guidance was withdrawn on

This page has been withdrawn because it’s out of date. You can read about EU funding at: EU Funded Programmes under the Withdrawal Agreement

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The purpose of this notice is to provide an overview of the scope of the government’s guarantee for EU-funded programmes.

Planning for a deal

Until our departure from the EU, we remain a Member State, with all the rights and obligations that entails. This means that the UK will continue to participate in all EU programmes while we remain a member of the EU.

The government is working to agree a deal which works for the whole of the UK and an important part of this process is giving certainty to businesses and citizens. Under the Withdrawal Agreement negotiated with the EU, the UK will continue to participate in the programmes financed by the current EU Budget until their closure. This means that all EU funded programmes will be fully funded under the current 2014-2020 Multiannual Financial Framework. Leaving the EU with a deal remains the government’s top priority.

Planning for a no deal

In the event that the UK leaves the EU without a deal, the UK will leave the EU Budget, meaning UK organisations would no longer receive future funding for projects under EU programmes, such as the European Regional Development Fund and Horizon 2020, without further action.

However, the Chancellor announced in August and October 2016 that the government will guarantee EU projects agreed before we leave the EU, to provide more certainty for UK organisations over the course of Brexit.

In July 2018, the Chief Secretary laid a Written Ministerial Statement (HCWS926) extending this guarantee to provide further stability for UK organisations in a ‘no-deal’ scenario. The guarantee now covers the following:

  • the full Multiannual Financial Framework allocation for structural and investment funds over the 2014-20 funding period, with payments to beneficiaries made up to the end of 2023
  • the payment of awards where UK organisations successfully bid directly to the European Commission on a competitive basis while we remain in the EU, for the lifetime of the project
  • the payment of awards under successful bids where UK organisations are able to participate as a third country in competitive grant programmes from Exit day until the end of 2020, for the lifetime of the project
  • the current level of agricultural funding under CAP Pillar 1 until 2020

As part of a ‘final set’ of ‘no deal’ contingency measures published on 30 January 2019, the European Commission has also proposed a draft regulation that would allow the UK to continue participating in EU programmes, in 2019 in return for continuing to contribute to the 2019 budget. The government is currently analysing this proposal.


This guarantee ensures that UK organisations, such as charities, businesses and universities, will continue to receive funding over a project’s lifetime if they successfully bid into EU-funded programmes before the end of 2020.

For awards where UK organisations successfully bid directly to the European Commission on a competitive basis, we will work with the Commission to ensure that UK organisations will be able to continue to participate.

The guarantee covers funding committed to UK organisations. It does not cover funding committed to partner and participants in other Member States and other participating countries. This means that where a UK organisation is the lead member of a partnership, any funding it distributes to non-UK associated beneficiaries is not covered by the guarantee.

More information

This technical notice has been drafted for UK stakeholders. Stakeholders in Gibraltar should contact the Foreign & Commonwealth Office for information on how the guarantee applies in the territory.

This notice is meant for guidance only. You should consider whether you need separate professional advice before making specific preparations.

It is part of the government’s ongoing programme of planning for all possible outcomes. We expect to negotiate a successful deal with the EU.

Norway, Iceland and Liechtenstein are party to the Agreement on the European Economic Area and participate in other EU arrangements. As such, in many areas, these countries adopt EU rules. Where this is the case, these technical notices may also apply to them, and EEA businesses and citizens should consider whether they need to take any steps to prepare for a ‘no deal’ scenario.