Opening the Door to Opportunity

Reporting on the Economic Contribution of Indigenous Peoples in Alberta


The Opening the Door to Opportunity Indigenous Economic Report highlights the economic contributions of Indigenous Peoples stemming from the spending by Indigenous governments, Indigenous-owned businesses and Indigenous households. It seeks to counter stereotypes by analyzing the economic impact of Indigenous governments, businesses and households, and includes insight into how employment among Indigenous businesses benefits Alberta as a whole. 

The economic impact of Indigenous Peoples in Alberta extends beyond the boundaries of their communities and traditional territories, and it’s become clear that the interests of Indigenous Peoples and the future prosperity of Alberta are aligned. To understand the size of the Indigenous economy in Alberta and the many pathways through which Indigenous Peoples contribute to the Alberta economy, we partnered with MNP to undertake this study.


The opportunity


Our findings show that closing the gap in employment and income for Indigenous peoples would make a significant contribution to the long-term growth and prosperity of Alberta. To achieve this involves increasing Indigenous participation in the labour market, increasing Indigenous entrepreneurship and supporting the growth of Indigenous-owned businesses.

MNP and ATB would like to thank all the First Nations, the Métis Settlements General Council, the Métis Nation of Alberta and Inuit for their contributions to this report and the Alberta economy.

About the report artist

Jason Carter is an Indigenous sculptor, painter, illustrator and public artist from Little Red River Cree Nation. We’re proud to display his artwork through this report. Learn more about Jason's work.

Growth through Indigenous partnerships


Susan Mowbray

MNP’s senior economist, Susan Mowbray, reviews the process of collaborating with ATB to develop this report.




Panel discussion

In this panel moderated by Todd Hirsch (former Chief Economist, ATB), contributing members of ATB and MNP Susan Mowbray (Senior Economist, MNP), Patrick Twinn (Senior Manager, Indigenous Relations, ATB), Heather Lastiwka (former Vice President, Business Adaptation and Strategic Markets, ATB) and Clayton Norris (Vice President, Indigenous Services, MNP) discuss and reflect on the report findings and how Indigenous Peoples are integral to Alberta’s future economic prosperity.


More from the Growth Through Indigenous Partnerships event

Watch more discussion from our panelists on a variety topics highlighted within the Opening the Door to Opportunity report.

Building capacity with Indigenous youth


The future of Alberta is Indigenous


Investing in development

ATB's reconciliation journey

We are working towards honouring and fully implementing the Truth & Reconciliation Commission’s (TRC) Call to Action #92. Read more about ATB’s reconciliation journey.

Our Indigenous Relations team is here for you

ATB is committed to finding ways to provide access to capital, as well as recognizing and meeting the unique needs of Indigenous Peoples, communities and businesses. While we’re continually developing products and services to best meet the needs of Indigenous Peoples, we have a dedicated team of individuals ready to serve. Read more about ATB’s Indigenous Relations Team.