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Canada and Poland sign Youth Mobility Agreement

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A new agreement between Canada and Poland will allow young people in each country to travel and work in the other for up to one year.

The Youth Mobility Agreement was signed between Canadian Immigration Minister Diane Finely and Polish Minister of Science and Higher Education Barbara Kudrycka.

"For more than a century, Poles have migrated to Canada and made great contributions to our country," Finley said.

"More than 800,000 people in Canada trace their roots to Poland. This Youth Mobility Agreement provides young Canadians and young Poles with even greater opportunities to work and travel between our two countries," she added.

According to Citizenship and Immigration Canada, the agreement will allow people between the ages of 18 and 35 the opportunity to benefit from "cultural discovery, international network building and gaining the skills and work experience to succeed in an increasingly global society".

Youth Mobility Workers, also known as Working Holidaymakers, can earn valuable work experience which can aid them in immigrating to the host country on a more permanent basis.

Canada is in the process of opening ties with Eastern European countries that joined the European Union in recent years, partly in response to the EU pressuring Canada to treat all of its citizens equally in regard to issuing visas.

On 31 October 2007, Canada lifted visa requirements for citizens of the Czech Republic and Latvia. On 01 March 2008, Canada lifted visa requirements for citizens of Poland, Slovakia, Lithuania, and Hungary.