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Viridian Group PLC (VRD)

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Tuesday 26 March, 2002

Viridian Group PLC

Stmt re: Ofreg's Proposals

Viridian Group PLC
26 March 2002

                                                                  March 26, 2002

  Northern Ireland Electricity statement on Ofreg's Initial Proposals on NIE's
                   Transmission and Distribution Price Review

Northern Ireland Electricity will respond in detail to Ofreg's proposals in due
course. These are initial proposals and we would expect to have further
discussions with Ofreg following our response.

As we assess the Initial Proposals we will be looking for consistency with
regulatory decisions elsewhere in the UK, the application of sound price review
principles, and an outcome that fairly recognises the specific circumstances of
the industry and its customers in Northern Ireland.

We would hope to continue to work constructively with Ofreg in order to reach an
agreement that is equitable to both customers and shareholders. However, on an
initial reading, we would find significant parts of the Initial Proposals
unacceptable and in our view would compromise the ability of the company to
provide a satisfactory service to customers.

NIE will respond to Ofreg's Initial Proposals by 10 May. Final proposals are
expected to be published by Ofreg in mid June.

                                   - Ends -.


Viridian Group

Patrick Bourke, Group Finance Director
Tel: 028 9068 9132

Robin Greer, Corporate Communications Manager
Tel: 028 9068 9178.

The Maitland Consultancy

Angus Maitland / Nick Freer
Tel: 020 7379 5151

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