The Scottish fishing industry has given a cautious welcome to a lifeline thrown to the West Coast langoustine fishery by the EC Fisheries Council.

The Council approved a compromise position over the future of the West Coast fishery, reached between EU fisheries ministers and Commissioner Joe Borg, in late December.

The agreement followed a draft proposal issued by the European Commission last November that fishing organisations claimed would have devastating consequences for the £100m West Coast langoustine fishery.

The original proposal included a reduction of 15% in catch quotas and the outlawing of catching equipment used by the West Coast fleet. However, the langoustine quota will now be cut by only 5%, with the proposal to outlaw catching equipment abandoned in favour of an agreement to use alternative forms of catching gear.

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