International contacts provided by local government support Poland in reaching "politically difficult" countries, helping to break the ice and initiate multidimensional cooperation, said jointly participants of the seminar entitled, "Local government diplomacy - efficiency and directions for the future”. The meeting was attended by the PAIiIZ president Sławomir Majman.
Secretary of State in Chancellery of the President of the Republic of Poland, Olgierd Dziekoński marked that the internationalization of the Polish economy can’t be done without the engagement of local government. As he said it is a key element of further development of Polish economy. He also argued that local government is a natural and very effective supporter of small and medium-sized enterprises, which generate over 50% of Polish GDP.
s Sławomir Majman noted, economic diplomacy has been decentralized thanks to the activity and the financial resources of local governments “The role of local governments in the promotion of distant markets is crucial”, he said. “Already two thirds of the Polish local governments cooperates with foreign countries”, he added.
Undersecretary of State in the Ministry of Administration and Digitization Marek Wójcik stressed that cooperation with local governments in other countries often helps to "break the ice" and opens other areas of international cooperation for Poland. He noted, however, that local authorities should develop a long-term strategy for foreign contacts. According to him, it is very important to create a system of self-monitoring of international cooperation, because its role will grow in the coming years.
Weronika Staniec-Porczyk from the Ministry of Economy noted that the Ministry assists local governments in international cooperation through expert support, cooperation with local government associations and arranging competitions for grants supporting such projects.
PISM report „ Local government diplomacy efficiency and directions for the future” was presented during the seminar. Authors of the document stress that the international contacts of local authorities support the government in reaching "politically difficult" countries, in the promotion of Poland. Diplomacy provided by local authorities also helps to promote political concepts created in Poland as self-governance and the Eastern Partnership.
According to the report, among local governments have the most developed contacts with Germany and Ukraine, France, Sweden, the Czech Republic, Lithuania, Slovakia, Belarus, Hungary, Austria, Russia and China.
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Excellent knowledge of chosen language is not enough.
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