• Charles
  • European Conservatives and Reformists Group
  • Member
  • United Kingdom Conservative Party
  • Date of birth: 25 September 1957, Aldershot, Hants

Speeches in plenary


Situation in the Maldives

15-03-2018 P8_CRE-PROV(2018)03-15(8.1)

Situation in Syria (debate)

13-03-2018 P8_CRE-PROV(2018)03-13(17)

Cutting the sources of income for Jihadists - targeting the financing of terrorism (debate)

01-03-2018 P8_CRE-PROV(2018)03-01(4)

Humanitarian situation in Syria, in particular Ghouta (debate)

28-02-2018 P8_CRE-PROV(2018)02-28(17)

Executions in Egypt

08-02-2018 P8_CRE-PROV(2018)02-08(8.2)

Debate with the Prime Minister of Croatia, Andrej Plenković, on the Future of Europe (debate)

06-02-2018 P8_CRE-PROV(2018)02-06(3)

Decision adopted on the EU Enlargement Strategy - Western Balkans (debate)

06-02-2018 P8_CRE-PROV(2018)02-06(12)

Current human rights situation in Turkey - Situation in Afrin, Syria (debate)

06-02-2018 P8_CRE-PROV(2018)02-06(15)


18-01-2018 P8_CRE-PROV(2018)01-18(4.1)

EU support to the Colombian peace process (debate)

16-01-2018 P8_CRE-PROV(2018)01-16(11)

Reports - as rapporteur


Reports - as shadow rapporteur


REPORT on the Annual Report on the implementation of the Common Foreign and Security Policy

13-11-2017 A8-0350/2017

REPORT on EU political relations with Latin America

20-07-2017 A8-0268/2017

REPORT on EU political relations with ASEAN

28-06-2017 A8-0243/2017

REPORT on Towards an EU strategy for international cultural relations

13-06-2017 A8-0220/2017

REPORT on the 2016 Commission Report on Serbia

22-03-2017 A8-0063/2017

Opinions - as rapporteur


OPINION on the draft Council decision on the conclusion of the Comprehensive Economic and Trade Agreement (CETA) between Canada, of the one part, and the European Union and its Member States, of the other part

29-11-2016 AFET_AD(2016)592207

OPINION on the prevention of radicalisation and recruitment of European citizens by terrorist organisations

18-09-2015 AFET_AD(2015)560548

Opinions - as shadow rapporteur


OPINION on women, gender equality and climate justice

23-11-2017 AFET_AD(2017)609665

OPINION on the EU-Africa Strategy: a boost for development

05-09-2017 AFET_AD(2017)606203

OPINION on the proposal for a regulation of the European Parliament and of the Council establishing a Union Resettlement Framework and amending Regulation (EU) No 516/2014 of the European Parliament and the Council

01-06-2017 AFET_AD(2017)601073

OPINION on the proposal for a regulation of the European Parliament and of the Council setting up a Union regime for the control of exports, transfer, brokering, technical assistance and transit of dual-use items (recast)

31-05-2017 AFET_AD(2017)602925

OPINION on the future of ACP-EU relations beyond 2020

31-08-2016 AFET_AD(2016)582441

OPINION on Towards a new international climate agreement in Paris

01-09-2015 AFET_AD(2015)560685

OPINION on Private sector and development

24-06-2015 AFET_AD(2015)552030

OPINION on the recommendations to the European Commission on the negotiations for the Transatlantic Trade and Investment Partnership (TTIP)

01-04-2015 AFET_AD(2015)546630

Institutional motions for resolutions


Joint motion for a resolution on the situation in the Maldives

14-03-2018 RC-B8-0168/2018

Joint motion for a resolution on mercy killings in Uganda

14-03-2018 RC-B8-0165/2018

Joint motion for a resolution on the situation in Syria

13-03-2018 RC-B8-0139/2018

Motion for a resolution on the situation in the Maldives

12-03-2018 B8-0171/2018

NB: This motion for a resolution is available in the original language only.

Motion for a resolution on mercy killings in Uganda

12-03-2018 B8-0165/2018

NB: This motion for a resolution is available in the original language only.

Motion for a resolution on the arrest of human rights defenders in Sudan, notably the case of Sakharov Prize laureate Salih Mahmoud Osman

12-03-2018 B8-0159/2018

NB: This motion for a resolution is available in the original language only.

Motion for a resolution on the situation in Syria

12-03-2018 B8-0143/2018

Joint motion for a resolution on executions in Egypt

07-02-2018 RC-B8-0109/2018

Joint motion for a resolution on child slavery in Haiti

07-02-2018 RC-B8-0100/2018

Individual motions for resolutions


Written declarations


Written declaration on commemoration of the victims of the Holocaust and support for the creation of the Babi Yar Holocaust Memorial Center

12-12-2016 P8_DCL(2016)0136 Lapsed


Ioan Mircea PAŞCU , Petras AUŠTREVIČIUS , Bas BELDER , Michał BONI , Rebecca HARMS , Frédérique RIES , Charles TANNOCK , Hannu TAKKULA , Boris ZALA , Janusz ZEMKE

Date opened : 12-12-2016
Lapse date : 12-03-2017
Number of signatories : 135 - 13-03-2017

Written questions


Transport and availability of medical radio isotopes following Brexit

28-02-2018 E-001222/2018 Commission

VP/HR - Forced labour among migrants in Libya

31-01-2018 E-000532/2018 Commission

VP/HR - Situation in the Kurdistan Region of Iraq

13-12-2017 P-007663/2017 Commission

VP/HR - Pakistan's GSP+ and its adherence to its human rights obligations

06-12-2017 E-007517/2017 Commission

VP/HR - Rule of law and human rights in Turkey

21-11-2017 E-007134/2017 Commission

VP/HR - Religious persecution in Myanmar/Burma

07-11-2017 E-006834/2017 Commission

VP/HR - Tibet

18-10-2017 E-006541/2017 Commission

VP/HR - Corruption charges against Dorin Chirtoacă

03-10-2017 E-006197/2017 Commission

VP/HR - The situation in Venezuela

24-08-2017 E-005268/2017 Commission

British officials in the European institutions

12-07-2017 E-004692/2017 Commission

Oral questions


VP/HR - Law on expropriation of land without compensation in the Republic of South Africa

14-03-2018 O-000030/2018 Commission

Use of the Instrument for Pre-Accession Assistance to tackle the migration crisis

25-04-2016 O-000072/2016 Commission

EU spending on external migration policy in neighbourhood countries

25-04-2016 O-000071/2016 Commission

Funding for political advocacy NGOs in the Arab-Israeli conflict

15-04-2015 O-000037/2015 Commission

Written explanations of vote


Creative Europe Programme (2014 to 2020) (A8-0369/2017 - Silvia Costa)


I am pleased to vote in favour of this proposal to enable the European Union Youth Orchestra to be funded by statute without the need for a call for proposals given its unique nature having been founded by a Parliamentary Act in 1976. However, I am also pleased to see that the amendments make it clear that the orchestra management should continue to make efforts to source funding from elsewhere over the next three years and to ensure high visibility within every member state. Public funding for the arts is vital but all cultural organisations should have an equal chance to win grants. Sadly the EUYO will no longer be based in my constituency of London and participation of British nationals in future years is entirely dependent on the outcome of Brexit negotiations. This is a stark reminder of the unintended consequences of the Brexit referendum as talented British musicians are potentially shut out of career-enhancing opportunities with the best musicians and tutors in Europe. I have no doubt that the world-class orchestral scene that remains in London will continue to thrive but the EUYO will be sorely missed.

Location of the seat of the European Medicines Agency (A8-0063/2018 - Giovanni La Via)


The EMA, currently located in Canary Wharf in my constituency of London, performs the vital work of evaluating, supervising and monitoring the safety of medicines within the EU, ensuring that patients from all EU member states can take medicines with full confidence that they are safe and effective. Cooperation on this level is a shining example of what can be achieved by working closely with our European neighbours – enhanced consumer protection and confidence as well as the reduction of costly red tape for companies who only need to deal with one regulator. Consequently, this vote to change the EMA’s location brings with it great sadness. By leaving the EU the UK loses not only automatic participation in the EMA but also its headquarters and the skilled-jobs that were based there. I feel for the many Londoners working at the EMA whose futures are now so uncertain and I sincerely hope that the UK government will do all in its power to retain associate membership of the EMA. I cannot object to the decision to relocate the EMA to Amsterdam but a vote in favour would suggest that I see this is a positive move for the UK. As such I therefore abstain.

A European strategy on Cooperative Intelligent Transport Systems (A8-0036/2018 - István Ujhelyi)


I am pleased to vote in favour of this own-initiative report to ensure interoperability between the different intelligent transport systems that are being developed at pace by Member States. It is clear that, as the digital economy continues to expand, the technology needed to create a fully integrated transport system with smart roads and intelligent vehicles is not far off. It is timely then that the Commission are working on ways to support this modern industrial revolution by prioritising interoperability across borders. Of course, the challenge of creating an intelligent transport system across Europe is immense and solutions must be found to privacy and data protection issues, cybersecurity threats and the challenges of technical harmonisation. However, if done right the outcome of EU-wide cross-border interoperability would be very significant, reducing road accidents and streamlining road travel. The UK is a world-leader in automotive technology and already a leading partner in CEF and C-Roads projects, working closely with other Member States to develop new transport technologies. It would be hugely disappointing therefore if the UK transport system is not able to benefit from inter-connectedness with other European countries. I hope that after Brexit negotiations such close cooperation will be able to continue.

Definition, presentation and labelling of spirit drinks and protection of geographical indications thereof (A8-0021/2018 - Pilar Ayuso)


. ‒ I am pleased to vote in favour of this technical proposal to align EU legislation on spirit drinks with the Lisbon Treaty. A publicly available and accurate register of geographical indicators will protect producers and ensure that consumers have clarity about what they are buying. However, I do not support the amendment to enable spirits to be made from non-agricultural sources, as this would negatively impact on agricultural producers who have been using traditional methods to manufacture spirits for centuries. Any attempts to undermine the quality of celebrated local products would only damage the spirits industry. This proposal is an example of the huge benefit to UK brands like Scotch Whisky of EU cooperation, which enables businesses to flourish and to sell their products across borders.

Mandatory automatic exchange of information in the field of taxation (A8-0016/2018 - Emmanuel Maurel)


. ‒ The public outcry against aggressive and complex tax arrangements, whereby profits are moved towards more beneficial tax regimes, is only increasing. Large companies which make millions in profits and yet pay less tax proportionally than those on an average wage provoke public anger and rob the exchequer of revenue for basic services for the whole population. I am pleased therefore that more steps are being taken to close loopholes by sharing information on potentially aggressive tax planning arrangements between Member States.
However, although I support the underlying Commission proposal which would oblige intermediaries who organise tax avoidance schemes to inform the authorities, I abstained on Parliament’s report which adds impractical requirements for Member States and intermediaries. If efforts to stop tax avoidance are to be successful, cooperation between EU Member States must be prioritised so that companies pay their fair share and are not able to hide profits in different corners of Europe under the noses of different tax authorities. It will be vital, therefore, for the UK to ensure that lines of communication between tax authorities remain open following Brexit.

Situation in Venezuela (RC-B8-0078/2018, B8-0078/2018, B8-0080/2018, B8-0081/2018, B8-0083/2018, B8-0087/2018, B8-0094/2018)


Venezuela is a country marred by political violence, chronic instability and a deteriorating economy, despite its significant endowment of natural resources. Anti—government protests – which have spiked since April 2017 – have led to dozens of deaths. The increasingly dictatorial government under Nicolas Maduro presides over a socio—economic crisis in which essentials including food and medicines routinely run short, sparking almost daily protests and criminality such as looting. Maduro’s establishment in 2017 of a controversial national assembly, which has proven unnecessary and provocative to opposition political groups, clearly does not reflect the wishes of the Venezuelan populace. International efforts aimed at breaking the political impasse and ensuring free and fair elections in May are vital to improving the political and economic climate in this troubled country. I was therefore pleased to vote for this resolution.

Zero tolerance for female genital mutilation (B8-0068/2018)


. ‒ I have for many years supported initiatives to eradicate female genital mutilation (FGM) – a deeply harmful practice which is believed to have affected some 200 million women and girls worldwide. Following a Sustainable Development Goal pledge to eradicate FGM by 2030, the UK Government has committed significant funding to countering FGM domestically and abroad, and the Commission continues to do important work by progressing its 2015 strategy on eliminating FGM.
Regrettably, however, a number of cases have been reported in my London constituency, as well as in other EU Member States. I was therefore pleased to vote in favour of this resolution, given that the text calls on the Commission to bolster its advancement of existing educational and practical initiatives to combat FGM, encourages the inclusion of prevention strategies in cross-sectoral policy frameworks, and recommends that anti-FGM programmes be included in Commission diplomatic representations. Such an integrated approach is wholly necessary to call time on this barbaric practice.

Jurisdiction, recognition and enforcement of decisions in matrimonial matters and matters of parental responsibility, and international child abduction (A8-0388/2017 - Tadeusz Zwiefka)


I am pleased to vote in favour of this report which supports the aim of improving and tightening up legislation around international child abduction, matrimonial disputes and parental responsibility. Situations involving child custody disputes can be extremely distressing to all involved and we need a legal system that is fit for purpose and that removes confusion. The proposal calls for a maximum time-frame for court proceedings and the setting up of a special court to hear cases of cross-border child abduction by a parent. Mediation between two parties must now be explicitly encouraged and the report makes it clear throughout that decisions should be taken in the best interests of the child and the child’s views should be heard. I sincerely hope that improving the legislation in this area will dramatically improve the current legal system that is in place, reduce unnecessary delays and costs and ensure that Member States can work together in the best interests of the child. It will be important that the UK is able to continue participating in this framework after the Brexit negotiations have been concluded to ensure that cooperation mechanisms that have been built up and are working well are not lost.

Implementation of the Professional Qualifications Directive and the need for reform in professional services (A8-0401/2017 - Nicola Danti)


. ‒ With around 5 500 regulated professions in Europe, making up 22% of the labour force, it is vital that the regulation of professional services across Member States serves as a driver of economic growth and not as a barrier. I am therefore supportive of all efforts by the Commission to reduce unnecessary burdens for the liberal professions over time and to make it easier for skilled professionals to work in other Member States. My constituency of London benefits significantly from the skills of European neighbours who contribute to the functioning of the National Health Service, the education system, the financial centres in the city and world-renowned architectural and real estate practices.
It is right that individual Member States may need to set out their own requirements for some professions but these should always be proportionate and linked to specific public policy objectives. Overall it is a positive step to break down barriers within the regulated professions and I hope to see continued effort on the part of the UK to ensure that we remain a welcoming and attractive place to work after the Brexit negotiations have concluded.

International ocean governance: an agenda for the future of our oceans in the context of the 2030 Sustainable Development Goals (A8-0399/2017 - José Inácio Faria)


As an island nation the UK has every reason to care deeply about the future of our oceans and the reform of international ocean governance. A sustainable maritime economy and a thriving fisheries sector are vital for the health of our coastal communities and the sustainable use of the oceans globally benefits every nation. In particular I welcome the recognition in this report of the increasing problem of plastic litter in our oceans and the devastating impact this is having on marine ecosystems and coastlines. Recent campaigns to change public thinking around disposable plastic packaging are a welcome step in the right direction but more could be done to aid the transition to a circular economy. However, this report proposes an overhaul of current institutional arrangements on ocean governance that is not warranted and I therefore vote to abstain. It is true that more needs to be done to protect our oceans but this is best achieved by improving the work of existing international bodies, building on current expertise and coordinating our efforts within current institutional arrangements.



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Postal address

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