Martin John Callanan, Baron Callanan (born 8 August 1961) is a British Conservative Party politician and UK Government Minister. He was Member of the European Parliament (MEP) for North East England from 1999 to 2014 and Chairman of the European Conservatives and Reformists group from 2011 to 2014. Callanan failed his bid to win re-election in the 2014 European Parliament elections, becoming the first sitting chairman of a European parliamentary group to lose his seat. On 8 August 2014, it was announced that he would be made a Conservative life peer in the House of Lords.
Following the 2017 general election, Lord Callanan was appointed as a Government Minister and Parliamentary Under-Secretary at the Department for Transport. In October the same year, he was then made Minister of State in the Department for Exiting the European Union.
Callanan was a Conservative Councillor on Tyne and Wear County Council between 1983 and 1986 (when the council was abolished) and Gateshead Metropolitan Borough Council between 1987 and 1996. He worked as a project engineer at Scottish and Newcastle breweries from 1986 to 1998, when he was elected to the European Parliament.
Member of European Parliament
He was a Member of the European Parliament for the North East England constituency from 1999, re-elected in 2004 and 2009. In December 2011, he became the leader of the European Conservatives and Reformists group in the Parliament; as a leader of a parliamentary group, he had a seat in the political leadership of the European Parliament, the Conference of Presidents.
He was a member of the ACP-EU Joint Parliamentary Assembly, and of the European Parliament's committee on the environment, public health and food safety (ENVI). Callanan was a regular contributor to ConservativeHome, writing a monthly report.
Peer and government minister
Following the 2017 general election, Lord Callanan was appointed as a Government Minister and Parliamentary Under-Secretary at the Department for Transport. In this role he introduced the Space Industry Bill.
In October 2017 he was made Minister of State in the Department for Exiting the European Union. The following month he was obliged to apologise for incorrectly stating in the Lords that the Supreme Court had ruled Article 50 of the Treaty on European Union was irreversible.
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