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Press release from CNW Group

ATHABASCA OIL SANDS CORP. ANNOUNCES NORMAL COURSE ISSUER BID

Monday, December 20, 2010

ATHABASCA OIL SANDS CORP. ANNOUNCES NORMAL COURSE ISSUER BID06:00 EST Monday, December 20, 2010/NOT FOR DISTRIBUTION TO US NEWSWIRE SERVICES OR FOR DISSEMINATION IN THE UNITED STATES/CALGARY, Dec. 20 /CNW/ - Athabasca Oil Sands Corp. ("Athabasca" or the "Company")(TSX: ATH) announced today that the Toronto Stock Exchange ("TSX") has accepted its Notice to Make a Normal Course Issuer Bid (the "Bid") to purchase, from time to time, as it considers advisable, up to 10,000,000 common shares on the open market through the facilities of the TSX.  The number of common shares that can be purchased pursuant to the Bid is subject to a daily maximum of 258,910 common shares (which is equal to 25% of the average daily trading volume from June 1, 2010 to November 30, 2010). The price that Athabasca will pay for any common shares under the Bid will be the prevailing market price on the TSX at the time of such purchase.  Common shares acquired under the Bid will be cancelled.The Bid will commence on December 22, 2010 and will terminate on December 21, 2011 or such earlier time as the Bid is completed or terminated at the option of Athabasca. A copy of the Form 12 Notice of Intention to Make a Normal Course Issuer Bid filed by the Company with the TSX can be obtained from the Company upon request without charge.Athabasca believes that from time to time the market price of common shares of Athabasca may not reflect their underlying value and that, at such times, the purchase of common shares for cancellation will increase the proportionate interest of, and be advantageous to, all remaining shareholders. Furthermore, the purchases by Athabasca will help mitigate the dilutive effects of Athabasca issuing, from time-to-time, additional common shares as consideration for asset or corporate acquisitions.As of the close of business on December 16, 2010, the Company had 398,991,297 common shares issued and outstanding.About Athabasca Oil Sands Corp.Athabasca is a dynamic oil sands company formed to develop and produce bitumen in the Athabasca region of northeastern Alberta. It was incorporated in 2006 with a goal to use the latest technology to produce bitumen in a sound, progressive and safe manner. The company's shares are traded on the TSX under the trading symbol ATH. As of the close of business on December 16, 2010, the Company had a market capitalization of approximately $5.9 billion.This news release does not constitute an offer to sell securities, nor is it a solicitation of an offer to buy securities, in any jurisdiction.  All sales will be made through registered securities dealers in jurisdictions where the offering has been qualified for distribution.  The securities offered are not, and will not be, registered under the securities laws of the United States of America, nor any state thereof and may not be sold in the United States of America absent registration in the United States or the availability of an exemption from such registration.The Toronto Stock Exchange has not received and does not accept responsibility for the adequacy or accuracy of this news release.For further information: Heather Douglas Vice President, Communications & External Affairs (403) 532-7408 hdouglas@aosc.com