International Raw Materials conference coming to Prince Albert next week

Michael Oleksyn/Daily Herald CACERMDI President Osagie “Leo” Ekhaguere discussed potash with University of Saskatchewan Prince Albert campus students on Tuesday.

There is a first-of-its-kind conference coming to Prince Albert next week.

The first International Conference and Exhibition for Raw Materials (ICERMs) 2023 will take place on Nov. 8-9 at the Conference Room in the Prince Albert Public Library.

Ahead of the conference CACERMDI President Osagie “Leo” Ekhaguere had a display of potash at the University of Saskatchewan on Tuesday and used the opportunity to tell students and staff about the conference.

Ekhaguere has been at various campuses around Prince Albert including the First Nations University of Canada and Saskatchewan Polytechnic.

“The challenge is on a weekday to get a lot of people which will be a little bit difficult,” Ekhaguere said.

“A lot of people are very interested in what we are doing and they are happy with the innovation. Some said, ‘this is so interesting because we’ve never seen this. All we know is we see finished products, and now we can see what is being used in making the finished product.’”

The theme of the event is “New Development and Solutions to Global Shortage of Raw Materials.”

The purpose of the conference is to bring together both Canadian and international people involved in raw materials research to share their ideas for solving the current shortage of raw materials. It will focus on topics including potash exploration and fertilizer production, among other topics.

“We are showing them potash because the focus of this conference is on potash and uranium, and we’re telling them that potash is used in making fertilizer,” Ekhaguere said. “We also mentioned that Saskatchewan is the only province in Canada where potash is being mined and Canada is the largest exporter of potash in the world, so we told them all this and some never knew this information.”

He said the goal is to show both technical and non-technical people the advantages of raw materials. Another goal is to stimulate the use of local raw materials.

The various programs also help people identify what these raw materials are.

Ekhaguere said they are increasing the visibility of raw materials both inside and outside of Canada.

The Conference opens on Wednesday, Nov. 8 Legislative Secretary to the Minister of Energy and Resources Darryl Harrison has confirmed his attendance as well as Mayor Greg Dionne and MLAs who are currently in session are sending representatives, Chamber CEO Patty Hughes will be in attending and Randy Hoback is sending a goodwill message. Jaklin MacGregor, CEO of Community Futures will also be in attendance

“We have been so very encouraged by the support from everyone,” he said. “It makes us very happy staging our first international conference and exhibition.”

The Conference will begin with an opening at 9 a.m. The conference goes virtual on Zoom immediately after lunch from 1:15 p.m. to 3 p.m. while all activities on Thursday 9 November 2023 will be on Zoom from 9 am until 3 p.m.

There is another in-person conference planned for April 2024.

“Next year we are looking at Alberta, but we are projecting from here. We are looking at Lithium and Limestone. We have 54 people who have already registered for the next year’s event,” Ekhaguere said.

For more information on how to register visit