Western Canadian Coal Provides Operations Update



    VANCOUVER, Jan. 21 /CNW/ - Western Canadian Coal Corp (TSX: WTN, WTN.WT
and WTN.DB and AIM: WTN) ("Company") announces an update on production and
shipments for the third quarter ending December 31, 2008 and the expected
shipments and production for the fourth quarter ending March 31, 2009.

    
    -------------------------------------------------------------------------
                                   Three months ending   Three months ending
                                      Dec 31, 2008         March 31, 2009
    Thousands of tonnes                   Actual               Forecast
    -------------------------------------------------------------------------
    Shipments
    - Wolverine operations                  318                290 - 360
    - Brule mine                            195                 80 - 120
    -------------------------------------------------------------------------
    Production
    - Wolverine operations                  280                370 - 390
    - Brule mine                            329                190 - 210
    -------------------------------------------------------------------------
    

    Sales prices in the third quarter averaged US$280 per tonne. Sale prices
for the fourth quarter are expected to average US$250 per tonne. After March
31, 2009, the Company expects to sell some of the coal in inventory at these
price levels.
    As a result of the lower than expected sale volumes for the fourth
quarter, the Company closed US$145 million of forward sale contract for a
realized gain of C$4.9 million. As at today, the Company has US$97 million of
forward sale contracts at an average rate of C$1.237 per US$1.00. These
contracts mature monthly until April 2009.
    As previously announced (see January 6, 2009 press release), the
Wolverine operation continues to operate at an annual run-rate of 1.6 million
tonnes per year and expects to remain at this rate until May 18, 2009.
Thereafter, the Wolverine operation, which produces primarily hard coking
coal, expects to operate at a rate to match the demand for its coal. The Brule
mine, which produces low-vol PCI coal, at the end of January 2009 expects to
operate at an annual run rate of 750,000 tonnes per year.
    John Hogg, President and CEO of Western Canadian Coal Corp. comments,
"With a net working capital position of approximately $120 million, which
includes $75 million in cash in the bank, no bank debt, and the implementation
of the cash preservation plan, the Company is in a strong position to weather
the short-term economic uncertainty. We believe once the economic stimulus
packages introduced around the world start to work their way into the system,
the markets will improve and the demand for will coal increase again."

    Third Quarter Fiscal 2009 Earnings and Conference Call

    The Company expects to release third quarter fiscal 2009 financial and
operating results on February 5, 2009 (after market hours). The Company is
planning to hold a conference call to discuss the quarter's financial and
operating results on February 6, 2009 at 8:00 AM PST.

    
    To participate in the call, please dial one of the following numbers:

        Access: 416-644-3414
        Toll-Free Access: 1-800-733-7571

    For Instant Replay Access please dial one of the following numbers and
enter Participant Pass Code: 21294040 followed by the number sign.

        Access: 416-640-1917
        Toll-Free Access: 1-877-289-8525

    The call will be webcast live and will be available at
www.westerncandiancoal.com.
    

    About Western Canadian Coal

    Western Canadian Coal Corp. produces high quality metallurgical coal from
mines located in the northeast of British Columbia. The coal is sold to many
of the top steelmakers in the world. The Company also has interests in various
coal properties in northern and southern British Columbia and a 50% interest
to explore and develop the Belcourt and Saxon group of properties in northern
BC. Currently, these properties provide the company with an estimated 15 years
of coal reserves at current production levels. For more information, please
visit www.westerncanadiancoal.com

    Forward-Looking Information

    This news release contains "forward-looking information" within the
meaning of applicable securities laws. Generally, forward-looking information
can be identified by the use of forward-looking terminology such as "plans",
"expects", or "does not expect", "is expected", "budget", "scheduled",
"estimates", "forecasts", "intends", "anticipates", or "does not anticipate",
or "believes" or variations of such words and phrases or statements that
certain actions, events or results "may", "could", "would", "might", or "will
be taken", "occur", or "be achieved". Forward-looking information is based on
the opinions and estimates of management at the date the information is made,
and is based on a number of assumptions and subject to a variety of risks and
uncertainties and other factors that could cause actual events or results to
differ materially from those projected in the forward-looking information.
Many of these assumptions are based on factors and events that are not within
the control of Western and there is no assurance they will prove to be
correct. Factors that could cause actual results to vary materially from
results anticipated by such forward-looking information include changes in
market conditions, variations in coal recovery rates, risks relating to
operations, fluctuating coal prices and currency exchange rates, changes in
project parameters, the possibility of unanticipated costs and expenses,
labour disputes and other risks of the mining industry, failure of plant,
equipment or processes to operate as anticipated, the business of the
companies not being integrated successfully or such integration proving more
difficult, time consuming or costly than expected as well as those risk
factors discussed in the Annual Information Form for the year ended March 31,
2008 for Western available on www.sedar.com. Although Western has attempted to
identify important factors that could cause actual actions, events or results
to differ materially from those described in forward-looking information,
there may be other factors that cause actions, events or results not to be
anticipated, estimated or intended. There can be no assurance that
forward-looking information will prove to be accurate, as actual results and
future events could differ materially from those anticipated in such
information. Western undertakes no obligation to update forward-looking
information if circumstances or management's estimates or opinions should
change except as required by applicable securities laws. The reader is
cautioned not to place undue reliance on forward-looking information.





For further information:

For further information: David Jan, Manager, Investor Relations &
Corporate Development, Phone: (604) 608-2692, Email: djan@westerncoal.com

Organization Profile

WESTERN COAL CORP.

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