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The surging mining sector, including oil and gas, is expected to keep Saskatchewan's economy on top in 2011, RBC Economics says. ((CBC))

Thanks in part to the potash boom, Saskatchewan's economy should see 4.5 per cent growth in 2010 and 5.3 per cent in 2011, a report from the Royal Bank says.

The provincial outlook report released Wednesday by RBC Economics says the province's gross domestic product, expected to experience the strongest growth of all provinces in 2011, is getting a boost from the soaring mining sector, including oil and gas.

And potash, the pink mineral used for fertilizer, is the brightest light in the economy right now.

Potash production was up almost 150 per cent through September, 2010, a "tremendous turnaround" after the 66 per cent decline in 2009, Craig Wright, RBC's chief economist, said in a news release.

If trends continue, Saskatchewan will have the highest real GDP growth in Canada in 2011, RBC says.

The company says much depends on how well agriculture performs in 2011.

Thanks to heavy rain and flooding earlier in the year, production of key crops, including wheat, canola and barley, was down 28 per cent.

Next year, if more normal growing conditions prevail, agricultural production should increase by 12 per cent, RBC said.

"The recovery in agriculture and continued strength in mining is expected to send Saskatchewan back to the top spot in RBC's provincial growth rankings in 2011," Wright said.

The provincial economy is expected to cool off slightly in 2012, with real GDP growth around 4.3 per cent, RBC says.