Canada’s banks making push into Aboriginal communities
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An 'emerging market’ at home.
Canada’s banks making a big push
into aboriginal communities

A few years ago Chief Darcy Bear and the Whitecap Dakota First Nation in Saskatchewan, made a practical decision to cut ties with the handful of financial institutions that were backing their infrastructure loans in favour of a single player; the Bank of Montreal (BMO).

It was a simple choice, Chief Bear explained. Along with its domestic peers, BMO made a concerted push into Aboriginal banking; then they went a little further!

In the past, the band was forced to depend on relatively short-term debt.  This made it harder to make the case for bigger infrastructure projects with extended lifespans such as roads, schools and  bridges. Instead of forcing the band into traditional 5 or 10 year arrangements, BMO began offering longer more favourable 20 and 25 year terms that were more common in off-reserve municipal projects!

Read the whole story at the Financial Post website.


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