The Defence Forces are likely to have a major role in the transporting of people to hotels for mandatory quarantining, under plans currently being drawn up.

It is also expected that they will be involved in getting the hotels ready through their expert knowledge of logistics and experience of quickly setting up camps.

The Defence Forces are also likely assist in operating the computer system that will underpin the mandatory quarantine process.

However, the day-to-day running of the hotels will be carried out by a private security firm.

The legislation to allow for the quarantining of arrivals from 33 countries has been passed by the Dáil and Seanad, but it must still be signed by the President.

Anyone who does not have a negative Covid-19 test will also have to quarantine in a hotel.

When the matter was discussed at Cabinet yesterday, no exact date was given as to when the system will be up and running.

However, several sources have told RTÉ News there was a clear sense that the hotels should be ready within two weeks, even if it is proving to be "operationally challenging".