01/17/2012 10:13 EST | Updated 03/18/2012 05:12 EDT

Saskatchewan First Nation partners on potash with investment firm

SASKATOON - The Kawacatoose First Nation has formed a joint venture with Native American Resource Partners, sparking hopes for a mine on the First Nation's land in Saskatchewan.

The reserve sits on a rich deposit of potash and Chief Darin Poorman says the community has been approached by 14 different companies in the past couple of years.

John Jurrius, CEO of Native American Resource Partners, says that his company’s investment capital is targeted solely toward First Nations, aboriginal and Inuit interests.

Poorman and Jurrius hope to form a coalition in order to push the mine into a development phase.

Jurrius says that a union of First Nations communities would give them a much larger resource to attract the world market.

Native American Resource Partners is a private equity firm with more than $5.7 billion in assets under management. It has offices in Calgary, Saskatoon and Salt Lake City.

"First Nations in the province have long been resource rich but limited with respect to access to development capital," Poorman said in a news release. "We are excited to have a direct link to a capital provider like NARP."

(CKOM, The Canadian Press)