As the Financial Services Spokesman, Charles has been busy with the single market in Financial Services ranging from occupational pensions to insurance brokers. He has amended, as Shadow Rapporteur, a report which will regulate insurance intermediaries and open the market up to the City of London brokers.
In the Financial Times, together with Theresa Villiers MEP, he has challenged the abuse of monopoly power at Heathrow to charge exorbitant business rates for flights across the Atlantic. He has been busy as a whip, in his role as Chairman of the Working Group A premeetings, in monitoring the voting lists for Constitutional, Foreign and Defence matters and has developed a specialist role on emergency resolutions - thus he spoke in June well before the hostilities began about the brutal Taleban regime in Afghanistan which prohibited the education of women and made all Hindus wear a distinctive yellow cloth reminiscent of Nazi Germany.
In Rome this September, in a delegation of Conservative MEPs, he visited the ex-King of Afghanistan to explore his role as a leader of a provisional unity government in the country post Taleban. He has been active on the Environment Committee ranging from the safety of mobile phones and global warming to the Public Health Action Programme and been using his medical skills as a Parliamentary advocate for epilepsy and recently addressed the World Congress of Neurology on this topic. Charles has also raised with the Commission a number of issues ranging from challenging the VAT rates on repairs to churches and buildings to food safety issues.
In letters to the national press, he has with MEP colleagues, opened up the debate on the legal status of cannabis and criticized the refusal of British private healthcare insurers to cover the cost of routine treatment throughout Europe. Last year he appealed to the President of Poland on behalf of British Poles illegally stripped of their properties.
Charles has maintained an interest in animal rights in areas as diverse as a motion on dolphins to pleading for Staffordshire Bull Terriers. He has also presented a petition complaining of Spanish go-slows at the Gibraltarian frontier in his capacity as their nominated representative. He was also sent as the Conservative representative to the joint debate with the Latin American Parliament to Chile. On his third attempt he obtained a 100 vote majority for his amendment condemning the perpetual exile of the Italian Royal Family which provoked the Italian Government to produce a Bill to end their 55 year exile.
He has opened the debate in a newspaper article for the introduction of three working languages only in the Parliament to improve communication and save money.