THE Balearic Islands are to receive over half a million euros from the central government ministry for Agriculture, Fisheries and Food to help fishermen combat the effects of soaring fuel costs which are paralysing the industry.

The national Official Bulletin, an historical register of social, cultural, legal and political life in Spain, stated yesterday that applications can be made over the next ten days for this European Commission regulated funding, with successful applicants being eligible for a maximum of 30'000 euros each.

It was on 11th February last month when the Fisheries division of the central government ministry had proposed a total of 30 million euros in funding to the regions where fishing industries were struggling as a result of having to pay steeply increased fuel prices. The government is anxious that Spain remains competitive in this field.

The Balearics however, are way behind the top beneficiaries in funding - Andalucia is to receive 5.46 million euros and Valencia 4.53 million.