New Gold Places the Amapari Mine on Temporary Care and Maintenance



    VANCOUVER, Jan. 2 /CNW/ - New Gold Inc. ("New Gold") (TSX and AMEX - NGD)
today placed its Amapari Mine in Brazil on temporary care and maintenance.
    Robert Gallagher, New Gold's President and Chief Executive Officer
stated: "We had hoped to mine and process oxide ores through the third quarter
of 2009, but efforts to maintain recent improvements in production and costs
with the increasing amounts of hard transition ore and waste in the Amapari
pits have been unsuccessful. While significant resources remain at Amapari,
the additional capital required to maintain economic production levels and the
limited remaining oxide reserves justifies the decision to place the mine on
care and maintenance."
    New Gold has determined that it would be more cost-effective to process
the remaining oxide ore (including transition material) with the underlying
sulphide resource in a new process facility. New Gold is preparing a
Preliminary Economic Assessment ("PEA") to exploit this resource with a
conventional crush/grind/CIL mill. It is expected that this study will be
completed in the first quarter of 2009. New Gold will also investigate other
strategic alternatives for the Amapari operation.
    In the meantime, mining at Amapari is being suspended immediately. The
leaching of stacked material is expected to continue until it is no longer
economic to do so. The operation will be placed on care and maintenance
pending the results of the PEA. All environmental monitoring and on-going
remediation programs will continue during this period and beyond, as will
on-going exploration programs on New Gold's concessions at Amapari.

    New Gold is an intermediate gold mining company with operating assets in
Mexico and Australia and two development projects in Canada and Chile. For
further information on New Gold, please visit our website at www.newgold.com.

    CAUTIONARY NOTE REGARDING FORWARD-LOOKING STATEMENTS

    Certain information contained in this press release, including any
information relating to New Gold's future financial or operating performance,
may be deemed "forward looking". All statements in this press release, other
than statements of historical fact, that address events or developments that
New Gold expects to occur, are "forward-looking statements". Forward-looking
statements are statements that are not historical facts and are generally, but
not always, identified by the words "expects", "does not expect", "plans",
"anticipates", "does not anticipate", "believes", "intends", "estimates",
"projects", "potential", "scheduled", "forecast", "budget" and similar
expressions, or that events or conditions "will", "would", "may", "could",
"should" or "might" occur. All such forward-looking statements are subject to
important risk factors and uncertainties, many of which are beyond New Gold's
ability to control or predict. Forward-looking statements are necessarily
based on estimates and assumptions that are inherently subject to known and
unknown risks, uncertainties and other factors that may cause New Gold's
actual results, level of activity, performance or achievements to be
materially different from those expressed or implied by such forward-looking
statements. Such factors include, without limitation: the results of the
preliminary economic assessment assessing the viability of a new process
facility; New Gold's operations are subject to significant capital
requirements ; fluctuations in the international currency markets and in the
rates of exchange of the currencies of Canada, the United States, Australia,
Brazil, Mexico and Chile; price volatility in the spot and forward markets for
commodities; impact of any hedging activities, including margin limits and
margin calls; discrepancies between actual and estimated production, between
actual and estimated reserves and resources and between actual and estimated
metallurgical recoveries; changes in national and local government legislation
in Canada, the United States, Australia, Brazil, Mexico and Chile or any other
country in which New Gold currently or may in the future carry on business;
taxation; controls, regulations and political or economic developments in the
countries in which New Gold does or may carry on business; the speculative
nature of mineral exploration and development, including the risks of
obtaining necessary licenses and permits; diminishing quantities or grades of
reserves; competition; loss of key employees; additional funding requirements;
actual results of current exploration or reclamation activities; changes in
project parameters as plans continue to be refined; accidents; labour
disputes; defective title to mineral claims or property or contests over
claims to mineral properties. In addition, there are risks and hazards
associated with the business of mineral exploration, development and mining,
including environmental hazards, industrial accidents, unusual or unexpected
formations, pressures, cave-ins, flooding and gold bullion losses (and the
risk of inadequate insurance or inability to obtain insurance, to cover these
risks) as well as "Risks and Uncertainties" included in New Gold's MD&A filed
November 12, 2008 available at www.sedar.com. Forward-looking statements are
not guarantees of future performance, and actual results and future events
could materially differ from those anticipated in such statements. All of the
forward-looking statements contained in this press release are qualified by
these cautionary statements. New Gold expressly disclaims any intention or
obligation to update or revise any forward-looking statements, whether as a
result of new information, events or otherwise, except in accordance with
applicable securities laws.





For further information:

For further information: Mélanie Hennessey, Vice President Investor
Relations, New Gold Inc., Direct: (604) 639-0022, Toll-free: 1-888-315-9715,
Email: info@newgold.com, Website: www.newgold.com


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