Recommendations on how the Government will deal with the commercial harvesting of Coillte forests are expected shortly.

Minister for Agriculture Simon Coveney said a process of due diligence has been completed and his officials have five different valuations in relation to commercial values in differing circumstances.

Mr Coveney said the examination of options has been extensive.

He said he will bring a recommendation to Cabinet in two to three weeks on what course of action, if any, the Government should adopt in respect of commercial harvesting rights.

Thousands of people turned out in Co Wicklow this afternoon to highlight opposition to plans to sell the harvesting rights of public forests.

The Walk in the Woods was organised by the Natural Resources Protection Alliance and the Woodland League, and supported by independent TDs Catherine Murphy and Richard Boyd Barrett.