On 23 April, in Toronto, some 40 professionals of Lithuanian descent signed the official establishment of the Canadian Lithuanian Professionals Group. This symbolic act was held on the occasion of the visit by representatives from Enterprise Lithuania and Global Lithuanian Leaders (GLL).

„The idea to bring together professionals of the Canadian Lithuanian community in an organized fashion has been in the works for several years. Taking inspiration from those who did something similar in the late 1980s and early 1990s, this evening marked as the idea’s next step, and founding of the Canadian Lithuanian Professionals Group. We are excited for the Toronto group to serve as a platform for networking, relationship development and finding ways to help our members support one another and Lithuania“, said Stan (Stasys) Kuliavas, Vice President for Sales&Business Development at Pilatus Canada, a leading provider of private aviation solutions both in Canada and globally.

His partners in this initiative became Algis Akstinas, Director of Marketing Products and Customer Base at WIND Mobile, Canada’s 4th largest mobile operator, Darius Kuras, Senior Consultant at Navigator, Canada’s leading leading high-stakes public strategy and communications firm, Tomas Kuras, Director of Sales at Intelex, one of Canada’s fastest growing IT companies, Vija Kuras, Director of Operations at Tuckshop Co, Victoria Radziunas, Brand Engagement Director at J. Walter Thompson one of the biggest ad agencies in the world.

Kotryna Stankutė-Jaščemskienė, Acting Director of GLL, invited professionals to take active role inspiring the positive changes in Lithuania and to participate in the number of projects valuable for Lithuania‘s economy and education. One of those – Lithuania‘s trade mission to Canada, to be organized by Enterprise Lithuania in 2016.

Interest in the Canadian market has especially grown in the last few years as Lithuanian export volume in the Eastern market has decreased. Moreover, EU and Canada signed Trade and Economic Agreement, which will eliminate up to 99% of the overall custom tariffs.

During the visit in Toronto the representative of Enterprise Lithuania Aistė Zapalskytė met with European Chamber of Commerce Toronto, as well as Foreign Affairs, Trade and Development Canada, and Canadian Manufacturers and Exporters Association. During the meetings the potential of Lithuanian companies and areas of interest were discussed, advice, how to effectively organize visits of companies was given and terms of collaboration were agreed on. According to Jonas Skardinkas, Minister Plenipotentiary, Embassy of Lithuania in Canada, Canadian market has a lot of unexploited opportunities for Lithuanian companies, and in order to establish successful relationships in 2016, Lithuania has to focus and prepare today.

You can check the pictures of the event here.