Wednesday, 8 May 2013

Questions (197, 198)

Richard Boyd Barrett

Question:

197. Deputy Richard Boyd Barrett asked the Minister for Agriculture, Food and the Marine his views on whether the sale of the harvesting rights of Coillte is unlikely; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [21884/13]

View answer

Finian McGrath

Question:

198. Deputy Finian McGrath asked the Minister for Agriculture, Food and the Marine his views on whether the sale of the harvesting rights of Coillte is unlikely; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [21885/13]

View answer

Written answers (Question to Agriculture)

I propose to take Questions Nos. 197 and 198 together.

The current position in relation to the Government’s decision that a concession for the harvesting rights to Coillte’s forests be considered for sale is that substantial work has been undertaken on the identification of the forestry assets involved, the determination of their value and the consideration of a number of issues associated with the proposed sale of the harvesting rights. As part of the process, a number of detailed financial, technical and other specialist reports were prepared for Coillte, by external specialist consultancy bodies, in full consultation with the Board of Coillte and its executive management. The consideration of those reports is ongoing.

As part of the overall analysis, good practice would dictate the need to assess various scenarios and conditions for the sales process. This process is a very complex one and, while the consideration process is at an advanced stage, I wish to stress that no decision has been taken, as yet. As indicated by the Taoiseach, the analysis is ongoing with its outcome to be considered by the Government collectively upon its completion.