I would like to inform you of the main news from the Council this week. First of all, the Council congratulated CERN and the Collaborations on the superb performance of the accelerator complex and experiments. It has been a great year so far, with important physics results across the whole spectrum of the CERN research programme.
Looking forward, one of the main accomplishments from this week’s meetings is that the Council has approved the opening of a credit facility with the European Investment Bank (EIB) to cover the cash shortage during the peak years of the High-Luminosity LHC (HL-LHC) construction. This is very good news since it will allow us to carry out the work necessary for the HL-LHC without compromising the rest of the Laboratory’s scientific programme.
Turning to the scientific and geographical enlargement, the Council approved the admission of India as an Associate Member State, and I very much hope that the agreement can be signed in the near future so that India can be welcomed into the CERN family soon. The Council also heard a report by the fact-finding mission to Lithuania, and I was authorised to move ahead with the next steps.
The week ended with a visit to the East Hall to meet this year’s Beamline for Schools competition winners. Following a full day of safety training on Thursday, the winning teams from Poland and the United Kingdom had the opportunity to discuss their projects with Council delegates during their first day at the beam line.
On behalf of the Directorate, I would like to thank the Council for its continuous support and all of the people who have contributed, directly or indirectly, to making this week so fruitful.