Ambassador Žygimantas Pavilionis starts the New Year with his first ever visit to Portland, Oregon. Just about a year ago, His Excellency’s plans to explore this town were hampered by a snow and ice storm that unexpectedly hit the Rose city just two days prior to the scheduled trip. However, this time around the nature was gracious enough to greet the honorable guest with mild temperature and a ray of sunshine.
His Excellency’s presentation, Russia and the Near Abroad, drew an auditorium full of Portland State University students and community members. Photo by Randy Miller

On January 15-16, His Excellency Žygimantas Pavilionis, Ambassador Extraordinary and Plenipotentiary to the United States of America and Mexico, was visiting Portland, OR where he took part in the annual Oregon World Affairs Council and Portland State University (PSU) conference.

His Excellency received the invitation to the conference to give a speech on the current situation in Eastern Europe, Russia’s aggression and the crisis in Ukraine. According to the Ambassador, Lithuanian representative was nominated as the guest speaker due to our country’s exceptional history, active involvement when forming the EU Eastern policy as well as one of the most successful transformations in the region. During his speech, Pavilionis emphasized the growth that Lithuania had been able to achieve since Independence, the growth which was inspiring other countries and the growth which had recently been crowned by joining the Eurozone on January 1, 2015.

During the two day conference, the Ambassador met with local companies and presented the investment opportunities in Lithuania. Oregon‘s businesses were specifically interested in high-tech, energy, transportation and agricultural sectors and promised to invite Lithuanian representatives to future trade fairs.

Lithuanian American Community Portland chapter was glad to welcome H. E. Žygimantas Pavilionis to Portland. At the reception with the community members, His Excellency discussed the introduction of Euro, education, politics and other topics. The Ambassador also shared the Lithuanian Foreign Ministry plans to open Lithuanian Consulate in Los Angeles, CA in early 2016. The students of the newly established Portland Lithuanian Heritage School “Atžalynas” honoured the Ambassador with the Lithuanian Anthem.

The World Affairs Council of Oregon is a private, non-partisan, non-profit organization. Its purpose is to broaden public awareness and understanding of international affairs and to foster international engagement. Being a member of the World Affairs Council of America (WACA), it offers over 40 public programs per year, hosts over 500 emerging leaders and serves as the local resource to international community.

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