Brexit update

Updated on 21 December 2017

This page provides information on UK participation in Erasmus+ in the context of the triggering of Article 50, the process for beginning the UK’s exit from the European Union (also known as Brexit). It was updated on 21 December, following further information from the UK Government. 

The National Agency for Erasmus+ in the UK, a partnership between the British Council and Ecorys UK, remains wholly committed to the Erasmus+ programme and its benefits. The National Agency strongly supports continued full membership of the programme for the UK through to 2020 as planned, under the proposed Brexit implementation period, so that at least 250,000 people across the UK have the chance to study, train or volunteer abroad, and that UK organisations can continue to collaborate on international projects.

We have been working closely with the UK National Authority (the Department for Education) to ensure that accurate information on Erasmus+ activity in the UK is provided to UK Government. The National Agency has a mandate to cover all sectors of the programme, and will continue to liaise with UK Government to ensure that higher education, vocational education and training, schools, adult education and youth activities are represented equitably. We will continue to update our website as information becomes available and remain the most accurate source of information on Erasmus+ in the UK for our beneficiaries. 

Information for UK organisations applying for funding

In 2017 the Erasmus+ programme reached the halfway mark in the UK with 500 million euro allocated to projects and activities since 2014. This year has been a very successful year for the programme with over 136 million euro of funding allocated in the first two application rounds.

The UK Government has stated publicly that the United Kingdom is committed to continuing full participation in the Erasmus+ programme up until we leave the European Union. The Government has now agreed a fair financial settlement with the EU enabling it to move to the next stage of negotiations. With the caveat that “nothing is agreed until everything is agreed”, in principle the UK will continue to benefit from all EU programmes, including Erasmus+, until the end of the current budget plan (2014-2020).

UK organisations wishing to apply for funding in 2018 should prepare for participation as usual ahead of the 2018 application deadlines. The 2018 Call for Proposals was published on 25 October 2017 with an update on 15 December.

The UK Government has made clear that it values international exchanges. In the unlikely event of a ‘no deal’ scenario, the Government guarantee already made still stands, and successful Erasmus+ applications which are submitted while the UK is still a Member State, even if they are not approved until after we leave, can continue beyond the point of exit. The guarantee applies to funding allocated to UK organisations, whether in applications submitted to Brussels (centralised) or to a National Agency (decentralised), whether or not the UK is the lead partner. Applications for Higher Education submitted before the exit date will include mobility in the 2018/19 and 2019/20 academic years. Practical details regarding how this would be implemented will be discussed with the Department for Education (the UK’s Erasmus+ National Authority) over the coming months. 

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We will continue to update this page with news and information related to the UK’s participation in the Erasmus+ programme. We recommend that you sign up to our newsletter or follow @erasmusplusuk on Twitter for the latest developments.

A Welsh translation of this statement (120 KB) is now available to download.