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Press release from Marketwire

SEMAFO/One Million Ounces of Initial In-pit Inferred Resources at Siou: 6.7 Million Tonnes at 4.62 g/t Au

Thursday, February 21, 2013

SEMAFO/One Million Ounces of Initial In-pit Inferred Resources at Siou: 6.7 Million Tonnes at 4.62 g/t Au09:29 EST Thursday, February 21, 2013MONTREAL, QUEBEC--(Marketwire - Feb. 21, 2013) - SEMAFO Inc. (TSX:SMF)(OMX:SMF) announced today that the 2012 year-end resource estimate will include 999,200 ounces in inferred resources from the Siou Sector, located approximately 15 kilometers from the Mana processing plant in Burkina Faso. The inferred resource estimate includes all zones identified within the Siou Sector, although the bulk of the ounces are located within the Siou and the Nine Zones. The following table presents information regarding the initial in-pit inferred resource estimation. Siou Sector Inferred Resources (in situ)ZoneTonnes (000)Grade (g/t)Waste Tonnes (000)OuncesSiou2,7325.74504,000Nine3,4104.02440,400All others5892.9054,800Total6,7314.62139,928999,200All calculations were made using a 1 g/t Au cut-off grade within a $1,600 gold price pit shell.A pit shell simulation was produced and is shown for the two main longitudinal sections of the Nine and the Siou Zones (Figure 1). Only the inferred resources within the pit shell were included. Although deeper intersections were obtained below the pit shell, their distances from other intersections are currently too far to permit inclusion (Figure 2). The pit shell is approximately two kilometers long and 250 meters deep.Drilling to date indicates that the Siou area is covered by a thin overburden cover followed by a saprolitic and transitional horizon measuring approximately 50 to 80 meters thick, before transforming to fresh bedrock. The mineralization occurs at or near the contact between a sedimentary unit to the west and a granodioritic intrusive to the east where series of shear zones containing quartz veining and sericite alteration over thicknesses of 5 to 25 meters are observed. The Siou Zone and the Nine Zone vary from less than one meter to close to 20 meters in width, with an average of between 4 and 4.5 meters. The shear zones dip approximately 45 to 60 degrees to the east.A preliminary sensitivity analysis of the deposit was also completed using numerous gold price scenarios, demonstrating that the high-grade Siou Deposit is only minimally affected by variations in the price of gold.Siou Sector Inferred Resources (in situ)Gold price (US$)Tonnes (000)Grade (g/t)OuncesVariance$1,6006,7314.62999,200--$1,300*6,8444.48986,800(1%)$1,000*5,6845.04921,300(8%)*Calculated using July 2012 Wona-Kona reserve cost parameters.The Siou mineralized sector was discovered in the third quarter 2012 and rapidly became an exploration priority. This discovery is more significant than the initial Nyafé and Wona discoveries, which led to the construction of the Mana processing plant. The initial inferred resource estimate at Siou could enhance the head-grade at the Mana processing plant for years to come. This could provide great synergy with current mining operations and should consequently reduce total cash cost per ounce at Mana should the Siou Deposit advance to production. Delineation drilling is underway at Siou with the objective to convert as much of the in-pit inferred resources to the proven and probable reserves category in the third quarter of 2013. The Corporation's goal is to begin mining the sector in late 2014 or early 2015. In addition, exploration drilling is underway in order to test the potential of lateral extension and to better establish the continuity of the deeper mineralization.On a larger scale, our exploration priority remains the Kokoi trend. The Siou Sector mineralization originates from an important contrast of rock competencies between the granodiorite and sediments in the shear zone. Prospectiveness along the 30-kilometer long shear is obviously in the same geological environment, but may also be favorable between massive volcanics and sediments as in the first anomaly found at Kokoi (2.57 g/t Au over 7 meters, Ref. Figure 3)These inferred resources will be included in the Corporation's 2012 consolidated reserves and resources estimate scheduled for release in March 2013.A National Instrument 43-101 compliant technical report will be filed on SEDAR within 45 days of this press release.The estimation database includes 132 reverse-circulation holes (17,600 meters) and 46 diamond-drill holes (9,500 meters). The specific parameters used for the Siou inferred resources estimate include:Minimum of three holes to allow interpolation in block model A 15% dilution applied A 95% carbon-in-leach mill recovery rate in both oxide and sulfide mineralization (reference SEMAFO's press release dated February 7, 2013) Costs include transportation to the Mana processing plant (15 km) Other cost parameters used are the same as the resource cost parameters in the Advanced Technical Report, Mana Property (NI 43-101) dated July 11, 2012Geostatistical analyses generate a capping grade of 40 g/t Au for the Siou, the Nine and the 55 Zones, affecting 2.6% of the 870 composites and removing 9% of the included metal. All other zones are capped at 35 g/t Au.Michel Crevier, P.Geo MScA, Vice-President Exploration and Mine Geology is SEMAFO's Qualified Person and has reviewed this press release for accuracy and compliance with National Instrument 43-101.All individual samples represent approximately one-meter in length of core, which was sawn in half. Half of the core is kept on site for reference and its counterpart is sent for preparation and gold assaying to the ALS Mineral Division laboratories in Ouagadougou, Burkina Faso or to SEMAFO's Mana Mine Lab, which uses separate sample preparation equipment exclusive to exploration samples. For reverse-circulation drilling, all individual samples represent approximately one-meter in length of rock chips homogenized and riffle-split to an approximate two-kilogram subsample, which is sent for preparation and gold assaying to the ALS Mineral Division laboratories in Ouagadougou, Burkina Faso or to SEMAFO's Mana Mine Lab. Each sample (reverse-circulation and air core) is fire-assayed for gold content on a 50-gram subsample. In addition to ALS Mineral Division's own QA/QC (Quality Assurance/Quality Control) program and Mana Lab's own QA/QC program, an internal quality control and quality assurance program is in place throughout the sampling program, using blind duplicates, blanks and recognized industry standards.Conference CallSEMAFO will host a conference call today, Thursday February 21, 2013 at 11:00 EST to discuss this press release. Investors are invited to call the following telephone numbers to participate in the conference:Tel. local & overseas:+1 (416) 981-9000Tel. North America:1 (800) 772-3714To access the graphic content of the conference call, please click on the following link: Siou ImagesThe conference call will be archived for replay until March 10, 2013. To access the archived conference call, please dial 1 (800) 558-5253 and enter pass code 21650201 followed by the number sign (#).A live audio webcast of the conference can be accessed through SEMAFO's website at www.semafo.com. The webcast will be available for replay for a period of 90 days.About SEMAFO SEMAFO is a Canadian-based mining company with gold production and exploration activities in West Africa. The Corporation currently operates three gold mines: the Mana Mine in Burkina Faso, the Samira Hill Mine in Niger and the Kiniero Mine in Guinea. SEMAFO is committed to evolve in a conscientious manner to become a major player in its geographical area of interest. SEMAFO's strategic focus is to maximize shareholder value by effectively managing its existing assets as well as pursuing organic and strategic growth opportunities.CAUTION CONCERNING FORWARD-LOOKING STATEMENTSThis press release contains forward-looking statements. Forward-looking statements involve known and unknown risks, uncertainties and assumptions and accordingly, actual results and future events could differ materially from those expressed or implied in such statements. You are hence cautioned not to place undue reliance on forward-looking statements. Forward-looking statements include words or expressions such as "will", "preliminary", "could", "should", "objective", "goal", "underway", "committed", "evolve", "become", "growth" and other similar words or expressions. Factors that could cause future results or events to differ materially from current expectations expressed or implied by the forward-looking statements include Siou's ability to enhance the head-grade at the Mana processing plant for years to come, provide great synergy with current mining operations and reduce total cash cost per ounce at Mana, the ability to advance the Siou Deposit to production, the ability to convert as much of the in-pit inferred resources to the proven and probable reserves category in the third quarter 2013, the ability to begin mining the zone in late 2014 or early 2015, the ability of our exploration drilling to test the potential extension and to better establish the continuity of the deeper mineralization, the ability to execute on our strategic focus, fluctuation in the price of currencies, gold or operating costs, mining industry risks, exploration uncertainties, permitting risks, uncertainty as to calculation of mineral reserves and resources, delays, political and social stability in Africa (including our ability to maintain or renew licenses and permits) and other risks described in SEMAFO's documents filed with Canadian securities regulatory authorities. You can find further information with respect to these and other risks in SEMAFO's 2011 Annual MD&A and 2011 Annual Information Form as updated in our 2012 First Quarter MD&A, 2012 Second Quarter MD&A and 2012 Third Quarter MD&A and other filings made with Canadian securities regulatory authorities and available at www.sedar.com. These documents are also available on our website at www.semafo.com. SEMAFO disclaims any obligation to update or revise these forward-looking statements, except as required by applicable law.The above information has been made public in accordance with the Swedish Securities Market Act and/or the Financial Instruments Trading Act.Figures 1, 2 and 3 are available at the following address: http://media3.marketwire.com/docs/semafo0221.pdfFOR FURTHER INFORMATION PLEASE CONTACT: Contact Information: SEMAFORobert LaValliereVice-President, Investor RelationsCell: +1 (514) 240 2780robert.lavalliere@semafo.comSofia St LaurentCommunications & Investor RelationsTel. local & overseas: +1 (514) 744 4408North America Toll-Free: 1 (888) 744 4408sofia.stlaurent@semafo.comwww.semafo.comMaria BangBrunswick Group Stockholm+46 (8) 410 32 189mbang@brunswickgroup.com