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Akita Drilling Ltd. Class A Non-Voting Shares

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Western Potash Start of Production Drilling

VANCOUVER, British Columbia, July 16, 2019 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- Western Resources Corp. (TSX: WRX) (FSE: WR0) (“Western” or “the Company”) is pleased to announce that its wholly owned subsidiary Western Potash Corp. has commenced its drilling program with Artisan Consulting and AKITA Drilling on July 14, 2019 at the Company’s Milestone Phase I Potash Project (“Phase I Project” or “Project”) located 35 km southeast of Regina, Saskatchewan. 

The Milestone Phase 1 Project will be the newest and most innovative, environmentally friendly and capital efficient new potash mine in Canada. By utilizing advanced horizontal drilling techniques, the Project will be able to initially target the high-grade potash bed, then by using selective dissolution, preferentially leach the potash to the surface. This will be the first potash mine in the world that will leave no salt tailings on the surface, thereby significantly reducing water consumption.

The drilling program will last approximately 4 months and will consist of 6 wells that connect to 3 caverns.  Each cavern consists of an injection well under the potash bed, and connected withdrawal well which returns the brine back to the surface.  After successful drilling and with appropriate regulatory approvals, the caverns will firstly start ‘cold mining’ to enlarge the caverns and saturate the brine with salt in preparation for production, followed by ‘hot mining’ that will recirculate brine into the caverns and preferentially extract the KCl resulting in the buildup of an inventory of potash in the crystal pond. By mid-2020 the process plant will be constructed and ready to harvest the inventory of potash in the pond. The plant will then de-brine, dry and compact the potash and truck to a nearby distribution center.

Artisan Consulting Services Ltd. has been involved in numerous oil and gas as well as potash projects in Western Canada, NWT and China. It is known for providing specialized supervision services for the drilling of vertical, directional and horizontal wells within Western Canada.

Akita Drilling (TSX: AKT.A) is one of the largest and most respected drilling service companies in Canada.  AKITA has over 40 drilling rigs in their North American inventory which includes use for drilling operations in Canada and the United States. Their extensive experience as well as a strong industry network proved to be a perfect partner for the Phase I Project and Western Potash Corp.

Mr. Bill Xue, President and CEO of Western Resources commented: “Western Potash Corp. is very pleased to have reached this milestone on the Project. Our strong project team enabled us to reach this milestone in line with our schedule. We are very confident that this project will lead to the world’s first selective solution potash mine that leaves no surface tailings in Saskatchewan."

Bill Xue
President & CEO
Western Resources Corp.

Qualified Persons

The content of this news release has been read and approved by Gregory F. Vogelsang, P.Eng., P. Geo., FGC, FEC Project Manager of the Company.  Mr. Vogelsang is a Qualified Person as defined by NI 43-101.

Cautions Regarding Forward-Looking Statements

Except for statements of historical fact relating to the Company, certain information contained herein constitutes “forward-looking information” under Canadian securities legislation. Forward-looking information includes, but is not limited to, statements with respect to the filing and results of the Technical Report. Forward-looking statements are based on the opinions and estimates of management as of the date such statements are made and they are subject to known and unknown risks, uncertainties and other factors that may cause the actual results of the Company to be materially different from those expressed or implied by such forward-looking statements or forward-looking information. Although management of the Company has attempted to identify important factors that could cause actual results to differ materially from those contained in forward-looking information, there may be other factors that cause results not to be as anticipated, estimated or intended. There can be no assurance that such statements will prove to be accurate, as actual results and future events could differ materially from those anticipated in such statements. Accordingly, readers should not place undue reliance on forward-looking information. The Company does not undertake to update any forward-looking information that is set out herein, except in accordance with applicable securities laws.

For more information on the contents of this release please contact Jerry Zhang, Corporate Secretary, at 604-689-9378.

A photo accompanying this announcement is available at https://www.globenewswire.com/NewsRoom/AttachmentNg/a413c017-0f04-4f17-b10b-33d611a6d58c

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Start of Drilling

Western Potash Corp. has commenced its drilling program with Artisan Consulting and AKITA Drilling on July 14, 2019 at the Company’s Milestone Phase I Potash Project
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