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Dear Members, Dear Friends of Canada!
On the 20th anniversary of the formation of the Canadian Chamber of Commerce in Hungary, it is my pleasure to raise your attention to the many achievements of our organization and the promise it holds for the future of relations between Canada and Hungary.
Our organization is today as much for Canadians operating in Hungary as we are for Hungarian companies and individuals looking to establish relationships with Canada. On the eve of the signature of a free trade agreement between the European Union and Canada, we anticipate seeing many new opportunities for cooperation between Canada and Europe; through these opportunities we foresee ideas and visions turning into business and trade.
For years after revitalizing the Chamber, we can see how we have stimulated interest through events that better address the needs of businesses in Hungary. In the wake of introducing a Trade Program that has attracted a number of companies in Hungary, and after extending this change to our membership structures we hope to better deliver what our members need most.
At the Heart of our Membership: Business Networking
In the era of social media and the internet, the tradition of business representation, the exchange of information, as well as the need of businesses for barriers to be opened for them has changed. Rather today we see vast numbers of opportunities and are limited in the time and knowledge of how to prioritize and how to select those from which successful relationships will be born. Herein lays our mission – to extend to our members opportunities to stimulate business interaction in a way that is conducive to expanding the productive relations between our two nations. The Canadian spirit is what sets us apart from the rest, and it is what keeps us united.
Small and Medium Sized Businesses in Hungary
Most of members, as are most of the companies that are of interest to those seeking to find Canadian or Hungarian partners, will fall into the SME category. Although our valued Patron members are often large enterprises, we do hold the SME to be among the most important elements of economy in both countries. At this time of global economic difficulty, we see the creativity of entrepreneurs and ingenuity of small businesses as being the engine to future growth. It is these businesses that will create jobs and drive trade. This is why so many of our activities are designed to put SME’s in front of each other – or to find a way for them to secure new frontiers.
The next year should bring many more other developments to our Membership as well. From the growing popularity of our social and community events (e.g., Steak and Lobster) to a newly formed CSR program with the United Way, our Chamber continues to grow in leaps and bounds. Even conferences and our government relations activities will continue to focus on how the business environment can be improved to stimulate growth and promote stability for SME growth. We will continue to call upon Canadian expertise and hope very much to find ways to bring interesting and valuable contributors to our Chamber from Canada and Hungary alike.
I look forward to seeing you at our events in the future and encourage those with something to contribute to get involved.
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