Poland in brief
Major cities: Krakow, Lodz, Wroclaw, Poznan
Official Language: Polish
Population: About 38.5 million
Religion: Mostly Roman Catholic
Area: 120,696 square miles
Number of Korean expats: About 1,400
A partner for peace
Diplomatic relations between Poland and Korea were established on Nov. 1, 1989. In 2014, the two countries upgraded their bilateral ties to a strategic partnership. For nearly 50 years, Poland has been a member of the Neutral Nations Supervisory Commission, which was established by the Korean Armistice Agreement after the 1950-53 Korean War in order to regulate relations between Seoul and Pyongyang.
Korea is Poland’s second-most important economic partner in Asia. For Korea, Poland is the biggest trading partner in east-central Europe. In 2015, the trade volume reached $3.5 billion. The trade exchange involves mainly mechanical and electrical equipment and metals. Polish exports include ceramics (especially the Polish tableware Boleslawiec pottery) and cosmetics. In the past, Poland has also exported large quantities of pork and beef.
There is great potential in boosting bilateral exports in the areas of cheese, sweets, confectionery products, fruit preserves and canned vegetables.
Poland is home to some of the largest Korean investments in Europe. The most notable investments are in the areas of electronics and mechanical equipment from LG and Daewoo, which produce high-tech goods like plasma TVs and home appliances. Samsung R&D centers in Poznan and Warsaw specialize in software development for mobile phones and LCD screens.
Poland is famous for world-class scientists, including Marie Sklodowska Curie, the first and only woman to win the Nobel Prize twice: first in physics (1903) and second in chemistry (1911). Poland is also home to Frederic Chopin, the renowned composer and pianist of the Romantic era.
Poles are known for their generous hospitality and outgoing nature.
Zofia Majka has a master’s degree in chemical engineering and completed an economy and marketing management course. She also passed the exam to become part of the National Chamber of Statutory Auditors in Poland.
Before traveling to India to work at the General Consulate in Mumbai, she was the chief quality control officer at the Institute of Semiconductors in Koszalin, Poland. After her service in Mumbai, she worked as the director of the senate’s office in Koszalin.
Born in Gdansk, Poland, in 1949, Majka earned his master’s degree in engineering from the Gdansk University of Technology and later left for India to take up a junior researcher position at the Indian Institute of Science, Bangalore, where he completed his doctoral degree in technical science.
He was appointed the Polish ambassador to India, and concurrently accredited to the Maldives, Nepal and Sri Lanka. He was appointed ambassador to Korea in 2011.