Revellers are set to prop up the bars of Glasgow later than anywhere else in Scotland as the city reveals plans to extending drinking hours until 4am.

In a move that would rival the liberal drinking rules of Barcelona and Berlin, the city is considering adopting a more European approach to alcohol consumption in a bid to avoid binging at closing time.

Under the plans, 16 and 17-year-olds would also be allowed to remain in licensed premises until 11pm, which could benefit teenagers attending gigs in the city centre and eating out with family.

Speaking about the plan, chairman of Glasgow Licensing Board Cllr Matt Kerr said: “By potentially granting licences until 4am while demanding the highest possible standards from licence holders we are striking the right balance between the licence trade and the needs of the wider community.

“There’s a strong view that a more European approach would avoid the rush to consume alcohol before closing time that then spills out on to our city centre streets.

“It’s very important to stress that this is still a proposal and that in any event, 4am closing would still be the subject a pilot programme that will draw in evidence from the likes of the police and the health service.”

Club owners insist current drinking hours are “restrictive” and, according to Garage boss Donald Macleod, Glasgow should be free to compete with other European cities.

“I think this approach is very progressive," said Mr Macleod, who is also convenor of Glasgow Licensing Forum. "It’s about getting a balance, to keep the city open for those who demonstrate the standards.

“What’s the point of having platinum status for Best Bar None if you aren’t rewarded for it.”

Stuart Patrick, chief executive of Glasgow Chamber of Commerce, said the city's night time economy – which already generates £2.6 billion per year and supports some 16,600 jobs – would enjoy a shot in the arm if the plan is green lit.

“Operating in a similar way to our European counterparts by adding an hour extra to opening times of pubs, bars and clubs across the city opens avenues for increased success within the industry," he said.

“We are fully in support of any developments that reiterates the overall aims of Glasgow’s economic strategy and we will work closely with our members within the sector to optimise the proposed new license within the city.”

Under the plans, which have been put out for consultation, venues would be considered for the later hours if the licence holder can prove they have prioritised public safety, securing gold status or above in the Best Bar None scheme.

Paul Waterson, of the Scottish Licensed Trade Association said later opening hours was "not the way to go".

“There used to be three separate licenses, there was one for restaurants, one for pubs and one for clubs," he said.

“Under the new act there was just one licence and the differentials have been eroded. Consequently we have got ourselves into a right mess in terms of what a pub is and what’s a club. We don’t see why places should be open until 4am. We would rather keep the disciplines between the three types of venue because they ran completely differently."

Off-sales could also face added scrutiny for license applications if they are located in areas of the city where there are found to be high levels of alcohol-related crime or health problems.

A spokeswoman for Police Scotland said: “This is one of many proposals out for consultation in the board’s draft policy statement and we will be liaising with policy makers to formulate our response.”