KDT new partnership to help speed up transition to green and digital Europe

23 Feb 2021

The Commission proposed on 23 February to set up 10 new European Partnerships between the European Union, Member States and/or the industry with €10 billion funding from the EU. The Commission also announced  a new partnership, Key Digital Technologies (KDT), aimed at reinforcing Europe’s innovation potential, boosting its competitiveness and ensuring technological sovereignty in the field of electronics.

Set up of 10 new European Partnerships with €10 billion funding from the EU

The Commission proposed also on 23 February to set up 10 new European Partnerships between the European Union, Member States and/or the industry. The goal is to speed up the transition towards a green, climate neutral and digital Europe, and to make European industry more resilient and competitive. The EU will provide nearly €10 billion of funding that the partners will match with at least an equivalent amount of investment. This combined contribution is expected to mobilise additional investments in support of the transitions, and create long-term positive impacts on employment, the environment and society.

Read the full press release here.

The ten Partnerships, some of which are building on existing joint undertakings, are the following: Global Health EDCTP3, Innovative Health Initiative, Key Digital Technologies, Circular Bio-based Europe, Clean Hydrogen, Clean Aviation, Europe’s Rail, Single European Sky ATM Research 3, Smart Networks and Services and Metrology.

KDT, one of the priorities at the heart of ensuring Europe’s digital sovereignty

Identified as one of the priorities at the heart of ensuring Europe’s digital sovereignty, the newly launched KDT partnership will support the digital transformation of all economic and societal sectors, make the transformation work for Europe and support the European Green Deal by contributing towards the EU’s target of becoming the world’s first climate-neutral continent by 2050. Elements of the Green Deal such as the supply of clean, affordable and secure energy, resource-efficient buildings, sustainable and smart mobility, as well as healthy and environment-friendly food supply chains all rely on KDTs to achieve their ambitions.

The KDT partnership is one of the actions on processors and semiconductor technologies that are planned by the European Commission, Member States, and industry. Other actions are the Declaration on a European Initiative on Processors and semiconductor technologies that is signed by 20 Member States, an Industrial Alliance on microelectronics, and a possible new Important Project of Common European Interest on microelectronics.

Definition of Key Digital Technologies (KDTs)

KDTs have been identified as one of the main drivers towards Europe’s digital sovereignty and its capacity to produce high-quality microelectronics. They make up electronic and photonic components, as well as the software that defines how they work, thus underpinning all digital systems including Artificial Intelligence and the Internet for Things.

Semiconductor components – chips that capture, store, process, transmit and act on data – are often vital ingredients of electronic components and systems. Semiconductor chips, in particular processors, are of growing importance in data processing for data infrastructure and communication, high-end and general purpose computing and future applications such as autonomous driving.

Objectives of the KDT partnership

The new KDT Partnership aims to:

  • Provide innovative electronic components and systems, software and smart integration to digital value chains, providing secure and trusted technologies tailored to the needs of user industries and citizens. This will help reinforce Europe’s potential to innovate.
  • Develop and apply these technologies to address major global challenges in mobility, health, energy, security, manufacturing and digital communications. This will contribute to and strengthen Europe’s scientific and technological bases.
  • Better align R&I and industrial policies for a joint approach in mastering these drivers of innovation.


The Commission proposed a financial contribution of €1.8 billion between 2021-2027 for the KDT partnership. At the same time, participating Member States make a similar contribution, while industry, research organisations, academia etc. contribute rougly €2.5 billion via the industrial associations AENEAS, ARTEMIS-IA and EPoSS.