CLACTON MP Giles Watling will vote against Theresa May’s Brexit deal if an “indefinite backstop” is not removed from the final withdrawal agreement.

The Tory MP previously hit out at plans for the backstop, which would means the UK would remain in a new customs union with the EU if an agreement is not in place by the end of the transition period in 2020.

He said: “I do have faith in our negotiating team to get an agreement before the transition period ends, or earlier, and a swift agreement is in the interest of both sides.

“Nevertheless, there is no binding obligation here, for either side, and the EU could choose to delay these negotiations and prolong our membership unnecessarily.

“Likewise, the EU can, via its representatives on the joint committee, refuse any extension to the initial transition period, which may be needed facilitate further negotiations, thereby activating the backstop mechanism.

He said: “That is why I called for the final withdrawal agreement to be amended, to absolutely guarantee that agreements on our future relationship apply, in full, from the point at which transition ends.

“Clearly, such a guarantee would circumvent and negate the need for any backstop, which has caused so much concern amongst Parliamentarians, businesses, members of the public, including residents in the Clacton constituency, and the members of my local association, all of whom I have spoken to recently.”

Mr Watling added: “Despite raising my concerns with the Government, these were not placated by the final withdrawal agreement and the indefinite backstop, therefore, remains a possibility.

“I do not believe that this is acceptable, and to put this simply, unless a guarantee of this nature is in place, before we vote on December 11, I cannot back this deal.

“I would be happy to support this deal were this change to be made and, should the Government not provide any assurances or guarantees, I have already tabled an amendment to the meaningful vote motion to make the House’s approval contingent on these being in place.

“Whatever happens next week, we must secure a deal – we cannot blunder into a no deal outcome.”

Mr Watling said a ‘no deal’ would be “disastrous outcome” and is not what constituents or local businesses want.

He added that the Conservatives should also not waste more time with a pointless leadership contest as a different Prime Minister would face the same problems.

He added: “Most importantly, we must not have another referendum. Being binary, referenda are divisive by nature and would leave the country in an extended period of pain and uncertainty.

“What we must do is deliver on the result of the referendum by leaving the EU in good time. I will not back any deal that fails to do this.”