At the initiative of Mrs Edith CRESSON, Commissioner responsible for research, education and vocational training, the European Commission has proposed, to the Council of Ministers, that an agreement be signed with Canada establishing a cooperation programme for higher education and vocational training. The aim of the programme is to encourage innovatory cooperation projects involving institutions on both sides of the Atlantic. Each project must involve a minimum of three partners on each side, of which two must be higher education or training institutions from two different Member States of the European Union or two different Canadian Provinces. Subsequent partners may be either higher education or training institutions, or other appropriate organizations (e.g. businesses, NGOs, Chambers of Commerce, research institutes, etc.). An overall budget of ECU 1.2 million is foreseen for 1995 of which ECU 600,000 will be contributed by the European Union. Seed funding will be provided for up to three years for each project. The agreement is a follow-up to the Transatlantic Declaration signed with Canada in 1990 and has been negotiated on the basis of a brief provided by the Council of Ministers on 21 November 1994. A similar agreement with the United States of America was transmitted to the Council of Ministers by the Commission on 12 April 1995.