NEWS RELEASE

Southern Empire Completes Underground LiDAR Survey at Oro Cruz

Southern Empire Resources Corp. (Southern Empire; TSX-V: SMP; Frankfurt: 5RE; OTC: SMPEF) announces that it has completed initial surveying, including a LiDAR survey, of the historical Cross Mine underground workings at its Oro Cruz Gold Project, located in Imperial County, California.

David Tupper, Southern Empire’s VP Exploration stated: “Mapping the underground with LiDAR and establishing underground survey points, which are now tied into surface control survey points, is a key starting point for all of future underground exploration, development and production at Oro Cruz.” 

Southern Empire’s underground LiDAR and survey contractors, EROCK Associates, LLC and Dundas Geomatics, Inc. (both of Grass Valley, CA) were assisted by American Mine Services, Inc. to complete this underground work in an efficient and timely manner.

At Oro Cruz, approximately 3 kilometres of existing underground workings at the Cross Mine accessed high-grade, oxide gold mineralization. This zone is a key target of Southern Empire’s future exploration plans.

Table 1: Highlights of Historical Drilling – Oro Cruz Gold Project – High-Grade Oxide Zone

Hole Hole   From To Intercept* Gold* Intercept* Gold*
Number  Type  Twin (feet)  (feet)  (feet)  oz Au/ton (meters) g Au/t
OC-197  RC    530 565 35 0.611 10.7 20.9
OC-405  RC  575 615 40 0.391 12.2 13.4
OC-428  RC  712.5 735 22.5 0.675 6.9 23.1
OC-86-24 RC  235 265 30 0.504 9.1 17.3
OC-157 RC  395 460 65 0.229 19.8 7.9
OC-280  RC  300 345 45 0.324 13.7 11.1
OC-385  RC  517.5 545 27.5 0.523 8.4 17.9
OC-382  RC  362.5 397.5 35 0.365 10.7 12.5
OC-322 RC  447.5 472.5 25 0.465 7.6 15.9
OC-DD-7  Core  Twin 223 271 48 0.238 14.6 8.2
OC-250  RC  205 265 60 0.189 18.3 6.5
OC-335 RC    485 522.5 37.5 0.294 11.4 10.1
OC-DD-13 Core  311 334 23 0.475 7.0 16.3
OC-467  RC  520 550 30 0.352 9.1 12.1
OC-87-11  RC  205 250 45 0.234 13.7 8.0
*  All averaged gold assay values are un-cut. Drill intersections are reported as drilled thickness; true thickness is not known.

**  Metric conversion factors: feet to metres: 3.2808; oz Au/ton to g Au/t: 34.28

The Cross Mine underground ramp and sublevel developments, which extend approximately 155 metres vertically below the mine portal, were established in the mid-1990s by the American Girl Mining Joint Venture (AGMJV). Subsequent gold production from the underground mine was however very limited, cut short when operations ceased on November 1, 1996 because of declining gold prices. Please see Southern Empire’s news release of November 30, 2020 reporting the excellent current conditions of the Cross Mine underground workings.

About LiDAR

LiDAR, which stands for Light Detection and Ranging, uses pulsed, laser-generated infrared light beams to precisely measure distances.

Qualified Person (QP)

The scientific and technical information contained in this news release has been prepared, reviewed and approved by David Tupper, P.Geo. (British Columbia), Southern Empire’s VP Exploration and a Qualified Person within the context of Canadian Securities Administrators’ National Instrument 43-101; Standards of Disclosure for Mineral Projects.

About Southern Empire Resources Corp. 

Southern Empire is focused on the acquisition, exploration and development of gold deposits in North America. 

In the Cargo Muchacho mountains of Imperial County, California, Southern Empire owns 100 per cent of the historical gold-producing American Girl mine property and also holds options to acquire a 100-per-cent interest in the adjacent 2,160-hectare (5,338-acre) Oro Cruz property located approximately 22.5 kilometres (km; 14 miles) southeast of the operating Mesquite gold mine of Equinox Gold Corp. 

At Oro Cruz, extensive historical drilling and large-scale open-pit and underground mining of the American Girl, Padre y Madre, Queen and Cross oxide gold deposits by the AGMJV (ultimately owned 53 per cent by MK Gold Company and 47 per cent by Hecla Mining Company) occurred between 1987 and 1996. At that time, gold was recovered by either heap leaching of lower-grade or milling of higher-grade ores until AGMJV operations ceased in late 1996 because of declining gold prices leaving the Oro Cruz Gold Project with many gold exploration targets in addition to the historical inferred resource estimate, reported In 2011 by Lincoln Mining Corp., totalling 341,800 ounces gold based on 4,386,000 tonnes averaging 2.2 grams gold per tonne at a cut-off grade of 0.68 g/t Au (4,835,000 tons at 0.07 ounce gold per ton; please refer to the Cautionary Notice Regarding Historical Resource Estimate below).

Southern Empire is well financed, having completed two oversubscribed, non-brokered private placement financings during 2020; see Southern Empire’s news releases dated March 18 and June 12, 2020, for details. With its strong working capital position, which also includes a significant equity holding in Bullfrog Gold Corp., Southern Empire has the financial resources to continue exploration and development programs at Oro Cruz and consider new opportunities. 

On behalf of the Board of Directors of Southern Empire Resources Corp.,

Dale Wallster, CEO and Director

For further information on Southern Empire please visit both www.smp.gold and SEDAR or contact: Lubica Keighery, (778) 889-5476, lubica@smp.gold .

Cautionary Notice on Forward-Looking Information

Information provided in this news release may contain forward-looking statements that are based on assumptions as of the date of this news release. These statements reflect management’s current estimates, beliefs, intentions and expectations. They are not guarantees of future performance. Southern Empire cautions that all forward-looking statements are inherently uncertain and that actual performance may be affected by a number of material factors, many of which are beyond its respective control. Such factors include, among other things: risks and uncertainties relating to Southern Empire limited operating history, the need to comply with environmental and governmental regulations, results of exploration programs on its projects and those risks and uncertainties identified in its annual and interim financial statements and management discussion and analysis.  Accordingly, actual and future events, conditions and results may differ materially from the estimates, beliefs, intentions and expectations expressed or implied in the forward-looking information. Except as required under applicable securities legislation, Southern Empire undertakes no obligation to publicly update or revise forward-looking information.

Cautionary Notice Regarding Historical Resource Estimate

The historical resource estimate is disclosed in a technical report dated April 29, 2011, prepared for Lincoln Mining Corp. by Tetra Tech, Inc. and filed on SEDAR and is termed inferred mineral resource, which is a category set out in NI 43-101. It was based on historical reverse circulation and core drill hole sample, underground channel sample, and blasthole sample assay results and calculated using ordinary kriging to estimate gold grades in 10-foot-by-10-foot-by-five-foot blocks. Accordingly, Southern Empire considers this historical estimate reliable as well as relevant as it represents key targets for future exploration work. However, a QP has not done sufficient work to verify or classify the historical estimate as a current mineral resource and Southern Empire is not treating this historical estimate as current mineral resources. 

Work Programs During the COVID-19 Pandemic

Timing of Southern Empire’s exploration programs will be contingent on governmental regulations regarding the COVID-19 pandemic and also the availability of exploration-related personnel, drill contractors, equipment, lodging, et cetera. Southern Empire will adhere to COVID-19 directives regarding safe working practices putting worker, community and national safety first and will proceed with exploration and development work programs only if potential COVID-19 risks can be effectively managed.

Neither the TSX Venture Exchange nor its Regulation Services Provider (as that term is defined in the policies of the Exchange) accepts responsibility for the adequacy or accuracy of this release. 

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