Windsor

Polish ambassador to Canada hopes to learn from Windsor

The Polish Ambassador to Canada will be spending the next three days in Windsor to develop connections between the business and academic community in Windsor and Poland.

'Canada has a lot of stuff to offer to Europe as well as the Europeans have a lot to offer to Canada'

Ambassador of Republic of Poland to Canada kicks off three day tour of Windsor. (Melissa nakhavoly/CBC)

The Polish Ambassador to Canada will be spending the next three days in Windsor to develop connections between the business and academic community in Windsor and Poland.

Andrzej Kurnicki kicked off his first day in the city by meeting with MPP Percy Hatfield, MPP Lisa Gretzky and MP Tracey Ramsey. Much of their discussion was based on trade from Poland to Canada and the importance of keeping those ties strong.

"Canada has a lot of stuff to offer to Europe as well as the Europeans have a lot to offer to Canada," said Kurnicki.

"We spoke about potential trade missions happening into Poland in the future. We have an agreement with the EU that isn't quite complete but certainly we heard from the ambassador that they'd like to see all the opportunities that go along with that," said Essex MP Tracey Ramsey, who joined Kurnicki for lunch at Mazaar restaurant Sunday.

An attractive selling point Kurnicki says is the young talent in the Windsor area. Much of his stay in the city will be occupied with visits to the University of Windsor including a lecture at the Odette School of Business.

"I will talk to the students about how to explore the opportunity in tourism and in the high technology business," explained Kurnicki.

Kurnicki says he's eager to get to know the Windsor Polish community. He attended mass on Sunday at the Holy Trinity Church and will be visiting the Polonia Park Subdivision project, which is directed by elected officials of Polish descent.

I want to learn more about the Polish community.- Andrzej Kurnicki,  Polish Ambassador to Canada

"I want to learn more about the Polish community. I think it's the ethnic backgrounds and many ethnic groups in Canada that have very good backgrounds to be used and to be utilized to promote the Canadian business in Europe," said Kurnicki.

The visit by Kurnicki is important to some Polish-Canadians in Windsor. 

Valerie Blak-Gill is the owner of Blak's Bakery. She is third generation Canadian of Polish decent. Blak-Gill says she's thrilled the ambassador is here to witness for himself what a vibrant thriving Polish community Windsor has.

"It's good for him to come because Canadians have a lot to give. The things that are still behind in Poland are advanced in Canada, but yet some skills that are lost in Canada they have in Poland. I kind of think it's beneficial to both of us," said Blak-Gill.

For Kurnicki, he says he's excited to learn more about the different ethnic groups represented in Windsor and how diversity plays a key role in Canada's economy.

"Canada offers something unique in terms of the vibrant ethnic groups something that I can learn from personally and how to utilize this to increase the knowledge and skills," said Kurnicki,

This is Kurnicki first visit to Windsor. He concludes his trip on Tuesday after a tour of the university.

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