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Microsoft Vice President and President Brad Smith has encouraged global technology companies to invest in Poland, saying the country has the chance to establish itself as an “AI Valley” and act as a pioneer in the development of artificial intelligence, an idea he discussed with Prime Minister Donald Tusk last week.

“I can tell investors: If you come from the technology world, this is the right place to grow your business,” Smith told the Polish newspaper Young People’s Newspaper“Poland is a large country with a highly qualified workforce. People are innovative and hardworking. There are opportunities for development here.”

“The investment driver is the opportunity to work with a large group of people who want to innovate and need technology,” he added. “This is exactly the kind of community that makes Poland an attractive investment location.”

Microsoft has been present in Poland since the early 1990s and has invested heavily in the country recently. In 2020, the company announced a $1 billion investment plan that includes, among other things, the construction of its first data center in the region, which opened in Warsaw last year.

Russia’s invasion of Ukraine, Poland’s eastern neighbor, has raised concerns among some investors. But Smith said Young People’s Newspaper that the ongoing war has increased Poland’s importance as a technology location.

“We see Poland as a pillar of NATO and NATO support for Ukraine,” he said. “I think the proximity to the war means that investment in technology is more urgent than ever.”

Smith held talks with Poland’s Prime Minister Donald Tusk last week about ways to improve cybersecurity, including outlining Microsoft’s role in helping Ukraine defend against cyberattacks. Poland itself has recently been hit by a number of such attacks linked to Russia.

Smith said Young People’s Newspaper that the rapid development of AI offers special opportunities for Poland with its strong technology and manufacturing sectors.

“The core processes of almost all companies are likely to change as a result of the implementation of AI,” he explained. “Poland, which is known for its strong manufacturing sector, has a great opportunity here.”

“A good example of this is Mercedes-Benz, which is using artificial intelligence not only to interact with consumers – including communication between driver and car – but also to revolutionize painting, maintenance and design processes,” said Smith.

Mercedes-Benz is another major investor in Poland. In 2022, the company announced plans to spend over a billion euros to build a factory in Poland. It will be the German automotive giant’s first plant to produce exclusively electric vans.

Last year, American payment giant Visa announced the creation of a global technology and product center in Poland, which will, among other things, advance the use of artificial intelligence in the company.

“The country has a chance to become the ‘Polish AI Valley,'” Smith said. During his talks with Tusk last week, the idea of ​​developing such an AI center was one of the topics discussed, according to the Prime Minister’s Office.

Notes from Poland is run by a small editorial team and published by an independent, non-profit foundation funded by donations from our readers. We cannot do our work without your support.

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