Sterling Mining Company
OTC Bulletin Board : SRLM
FRANKFURT : SMX
TSX : SMQ

Sterling Mining Company

December 20, 2007 15:35 ET

Sterling Mining Commences Production at the Sunshine Mine

WALLACE, IDAHO--(Marketwire - Dec. 20, 2007) - Sterling Mining Company (TSX:SMQ)(OTCBB:SRLM)(FRANKFURT:SMX) today announced that it has resumed initial production at the Sunshine Mine in Idaho, USA. This announcement caps off an extremely productive year for Sterling Mining Company which included becoming listed on Canada's senior exchange, the TSX; a successful fundraising of US$24.7 million; and completion of Sunshine Mine's technical report compliant to Canada's National Instrument 43-101 (the "43-101 Report").

The 43-101 Report outlines a production forecast for 2008, amounting to 2.8 million ounces of silver with additional copper and lead credits, based on an average milling rate of 479 dry short tons per day for the year. Building on this startup mill throughput for 2008, Sterling anticipates a steady increase in production over the next three years until an average daily processing rate of 1,000 tons per day is achieved.

The first shipment of concentrate, which left the Mine site this morning for Teck Cominco's Trail British Columbia smelter, comes from processing of newly mined ores.

Also this week, Sunshine Mine has resumed mining activities on lower levels after a methodical and intense four-year process to rehabilitate, improve and re-commission the Mine after its closure by previous operators in 2001.

With renovation of the Silver Summit hoist and rehabilitation of the Silver Summit shaft to the 3000 foot level, Sunshine Mine's secondary escapeway system is now complete. Sterling crews are resuming mining activities from 2700 foot and 3100 foot level workplaces idled at closure. Ores from these levels, at closure, averaged 23.6 ounces of silver per ton. In addition to mining activities being resumed on the lower levels, crews are also processing material from Upper Country drifting and exploration.

Sterling's President Ray De Motte said, "The credit for this historical event goes to the men and women at the Sunshine Mine. Without their expertise, teamwork and relentless efforts this simply would not be possible. We are grateful to the community, employees, vendors, support of shareholders, investors and investment bankers TD Securities Inc. and Blackmont Capital Inc., and look forward to achieving our goal of long-term sustainable production."

To commemorate achieving this major milestone, Sterling Mining has scheduled a ribbon-cutting ceremony and celebration for February 2008, details for which will be announced in a subsequent press release.

Sterling Mining Company will provide updates on production and development activities going forward.

About Sterling Mining Company

Sterling Mining controls the Sunshine Mine, which began initial production in December 2007, and related exploration lands in the prolific Silver Valley of northern Idaho. The Company also holds several silver properties in Mexico, including the Barones Tailings Project in the Zacatecas Silver District. Shares of Sterling Mining Company trade on the TSX under the symbol "SMQ", on the OTCBB under the symbol SLRM, and also on the Frankfurt Stock Exchange under the trading symbol "SMX".

To receive Sterling news via email, please email sarah@chfir.com and specify "SMQ news" in the subject line.

Mr. Derek Rance P.Eng, of Behre Dolbear & Company, Inc., qualified person under NI-43-101, supervised the preparation of the technical information contained in this press release. Mr. Rance is independent of the Company. For complete and additional information regarding the technical aspects discussed in this press release, including disclosure with respect to assumptions and parameters regarding the future production estimates discussed herein, the reader is referred to Sterling's technical report with respect to the Sunshine Mine, available at www.sedar.com.

Cautionary Language and Forward Looking Statements

Certain statements contained in this news release and subsequent oral statements made by and on behalf of the Company may contain forward-looking information within the meaning of the United States Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995 and similar Canadian legislation. Such forward-looking statements are identified by words such as "intends", "forecast", "anticipates", "believes", "expects", and "hopes" and include, without limitation, statements regarding the Company's plan of business operations and future production. Such forward looking information is based entirely on management's estimates based on information available at the time of this news release. There can be no assurance that such statements will prove to be accurate; actual results and future events could differ materially from such statements. Factors that could cause actual results to differ materially include, among others, the uncertainties involved in interpreting drilling results and those set forth in the Company's Annual Report on Form 10-K for the year ended December 31, 2006 filed with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission ("SEC") and other filings made from time to time by the Company with the SEC and Canadian securities regulators. Most of these factors are outside the control of the Company. Investors are cautioned not to put undue reliance on forward-looking statements. Except as otherwise required by applicable securities statutes or regulation, the Company disclaims any intent or obligation to update publicly these forward-looking statements, whether as a result of new information, future events or otherwise.

This press release does not constitute an offer to sell or a solicitation to buy securities, and contains forward-looking statements regarding the Company within the meaning of Section 27A of the Securities Act and Section 21E of the Exchange Act. These statements are based on assumptions that the Company believes are reasonable but that are subject to uncertainties and business risks. Actual results relating to any and all of these subjects may differ materially from expected results. Factors that could cause results to differ materially include economic and political events, the ability to raise capital in the financial markets, and other factors discussed in the Company's periodic filings with the Securities and Exchange Commission, including its annual report on Form 10-K for the year ended December 31, 2006 and subsequent 10-Q and 8-K filings.

Contact Information

  • Sterling Mining Company
    Raymond De Motte
    President
    (208) 699-6097
    or
    Sterling Mining Company
    Monique Hayes
    Marketing/Communications
    (208) 699-6097
    Website: www.SterlingMining.com
    or
    CHF Investor Relations
    Alison Tullis
    Account Manager
    (416) 868-1079 x233
    Email: alison@chfir.com
    Website: www.chfir.com