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Canada and Poland explore opportunities in oil and gas development

Alexandra Bugailiskis, Ambassador of Canada to Poland with Dave Manning (on her right) and Josh Massop (on her left), Branch Managers from Phoenix Technology Services. Photo: Polish-Canadian Chamber of Commerce

From left to right: Laurent Auger, Government of Alberta; Dave Manning, Phoenix Technology Services; Roger MacIsaac, ATCO Structures & Logistics; Rouslan Kats, Embassy of Canada; Josh Massop, Phoenix Technology Services. Photo: Polish-Canadian Chamber of Commerce

A Canadian delegation spent a week in Warsaw, Gdansk and Krakow as part of the Alberta Oil and Gas Trade Mission to Poland. The mission met with Polish oil and gas companies, government officials, academic and research & development institutions and energy experts to focus on opportunities for further Canada-Poland cooperation in the oil and gas industry.

Many observers believe that potential shale gas production may hold the key to Poland’s future energy security. The business opportunity in Poland is considerable as the country lacks many of the elements necessary for exploration, production and the subsequent distribution of shale gas.

The Polish oil and gas industry regard North American technology and expertise very highly. Developing the shale gas industry has become a key priority for Poland as it works to reduce its dependence on coal and on Russian gas.

The events, organized by the Embassy of Canada to Poland in cooperation with the Government of Alberta and Calgary Economic Development, focused on outlining the energy climate in Poland including the regulatory and legal aspects of oil & gas operations in Poland and on facilitating concrete business opportunities for Canadian companies.

Along with sharing best practices for doing business in Poland, the delegation gained some perspective on Polish energy policy, the oil and gas industry, and the status of shale gas exploration in the region. The delegation met with all of the major state-owned oil and gas companies and other key industry and R&D partners, and had around 40 individual business-to-business meetings, generating a considerable number of trade leads.

"This is the best mission I have participated in. It was organized with hard work, thoughtfulness in the content, creativity in getting things done, collaboration, attention to detail, and with genuine care for the delegation members." - Nancy Wu, Director, Oil and Gas, Ministry of Enterprise and Advanced Education of Alberta

Poland is Canada’s largest merchandise trading partner in Central Europe. Bilateral merchandise trade between Canada and Poland totalled $1.7 billion in 2012. The visit builds upon the Joint Declaration on Energy Cooperation signed during Polish Prime Minister Donald Tusk’s visit to Ottawa in May 2012. This declaration called on the two countries to continue their energy dialogue and explore further collaborations regarding policies, regulations, efficiency, and development.

Canadian Ambassador Alexandra Bugailiskis is enthusiastic about the possibilities, noting that "strong advocacy over several years is putting Canada on the map. The Embassy has developed a strong network of local contacts which has contributed to keeping Canada top-of-mind among government and industry representatives alike."


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