Tuesday, 14 February 2023, Düsseldorf, NRW, Germany: Premier Hendrik Wüst received the Ambassador of the Republic of Poland, Dariusz Pawłoś at the State Chancellery.
Nathanael Liminski, Minister for Federal and European Affairs, International Affairs and Media and Head of the State Chancellery, also took part in the conversation. The topic of the discussion was the strengthening of the relationship between North Rhine-Westphalia and Poland, especially against the background of the Russian war of aggression against the Ukraine and its consequences for North Rhine-Westphalia, Poland and Europe.
Premier Hendrik Wüst said as per statement linked below in its original German-language version: “The relations between North Rhine-Westphalia and Poland are deeply rooted in the history of our countries. The Russian war of aggression on Ukraine brings us even closer together. We are united by the common and non-negotiable goal of providing comprehensive support to Ukraine at many different levels. At the same time, we also want to build a bridge to the future together on other topics: the transformation of energy supply, decarbonisation of industry, the digital economy, sustainable supply chains and securing skilled labour are high on our bilateral agenda.
Nathanael Liminski, Minister for Federal and European Affairs, International Affairs and Media and Head of the State Chancellery: “We have a close partnership and friendship with Poland in the heart of Europe. For more than 20 years, North Rhine-Westphalia has maintained a lively, regional partnership with Silesia, which is supported and lived every day not only at the political level, but above all by municipalities, associations, schools, experts and artists. I am particularly impressed by the joint civil society commitment of our countries to Ukraine. The state government would like to recognise this in particular with the Richeza Prize, which is being awarded for the fifth time.”
North Rhine-Westphalia has maintained multifaceted and friendly relations with the Republic of Poland for many years. This year, the Richeza Prize will be awarded for the fifth time. Since 2009, the North Rhine-Westphalian government has been supporting and promoting understanding, dialogue and civic exchange between the people of Poland and North Rhine-Westphalia.
Background North Rhine-Westphalia and Poland
The state of North Rhine-Westphalia has had close ties with Poland for many years. Approximately 220,000 Polish citizens and over 650,000 people of Polish origin live in North Rhine-Westphalia. In addition, Poland ranks seventh in the list of North Rhine-Westphalia’s most important trading partners, with a trade volume of over 23 billion euros.
Culturally and socially, there is also a close exchange that is lived out in numerous municipal partnerships, including Cologne – Katowice, Düsseldorf – Warsaw, Essen – Zabrze or Rhein-Kreis Neuss – Mikołów District. In 2021, the more than 20-year-old regional partnership with the Silesian Voivodeship was renewed. Since 2019, there has also been a partnership between the Katowice metropolitan region and the Ruhr Regional Association, which are dedicated to local public transport, among other things.
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