Key changes to the qualification format for the Champions Cup will be introduced by EPCR next season
The move is aimed at creating more of a streamlined pathway to participation in Europe's top flight.
At the end of the 2017/18 season, the seven highest-ranked clubs from the Guinness PRO12 will qualify for the following season's Champions Cup regardless of their country of origin.
This will replace the current format which requires that at least one club from each of Ireland, Italy, Scotland and Wales is included in the seven qualifiers.
The qualification process for the Aviva Premiership and the TOP 14 which sees the six highest-ranked clubs secure places in the Champions Cup will remain.
There will also be an added incentive for Challenge Cup clubs with the tournament winner automatically taking the 20th spot.
If the Challenge Cup winner is already qualified, then the losing finalist will take its place.