Message from the Minister of Energy and Resources

Aug 3, 2022 | potash news

Jim Reiter

On behalf of Premier Scott Moe and the Government of Saskatchewan, it’s my pleasure to provide an update on Saskatchewan’s potash sector.

Saskatchewan is the sole potash producer in Canada and continues to lead the world in potash production, while emitting 50 per cent fewer emissions than competing jurisdictions. Over the past 15 years, the potash sector has committed more than $30 billion of investment in mine expansions and new projects in the province. It directly employs roughly 6,000 people and contributes to the livelihoods of thousands more.

Saskatchewan’s potash sector saw another strong year in 2021, hitting record levels in production and value of sales.

Global interest in the province is at an all-time high as countries look to us as an ethical and reliable producer for their resource needs. In response to the growing demand and escalating concern around global food security, our potash sector is working to ramp up production to fill the market gaps left by sanctions on Russia and Belarus.

Nutrien announced they will be ramping-up annual potash production capability to 18 million tonnes by 2025 in response to supply uncertainty. This represents an increase of more than five million tonnes, or 40 per cent, compared to 2020. This will lead to approximately 350 new jobs in the province.

K+S Potash recently announced plans to increase production to four million tonnes per year over the next few decades at their Bethune facility. K+S is looking to hire more than 70 new employees to carry out these operations.

Mosaic is also taking action to increase their annual potash operating capability by a further 1.5 million tonnes by the second half of 2023. They will do so by adding additional mining machines at the new Esterhazy K3 operation and restarting the second mill at their Colonsay mine. Since resuming production at Colonsay in 2021, Mosaic has added 150 jobs at the site.

As demand for potash is projected to continue growing over the next decade, Saskatchewan producers are evaluating and planning further investments to supply future market needs. Several companies have new potash projects in varying stages of development, including BHP’s $12 billion Jansen project.

BHP’s Jansen potash mine is the single largest economic investment in Saskatchewan’s history. The Jansen project is expected to create 3,500 jobs annually during peak construction and over 600 jobs once in operation. BHP is now looking at accelerating Phase 1 of the project, and evaluating Phase 2, which would add an additional four-million tonnes of production before 2030.

Our government continues to work towards meeting the objectives outlined in Saskatchewan’s Growth Plan. With the strong performance of the potash sector, Saskatchewan is poised to surpass our 2030 Growth Plan goal of $9 billion in potash sales this year.

Notably, Saskatchewan has retained its number-one spot as the best place in Canada, and the second-best jurisdiction globally, for mining investment attractiveness, according to the highly anticipated 2021 Fraser Institute Annual Survey of Mining Companies. The survey calculates an Investment Attractiveness Index based on factors such as jurisdictional stability, regulations, competitive tax regimes, infrastructure, and geological attractiveness.

The Government of Saskatchewan is proud of our thriving potash sector. We are focused on maintaining Saskatchewan as a top jurisdiction for industry to invest, grow, and innovate as we provide the world with the ethically and sustainably produced products it needs.