Britain could be forced to write cheques to Brussels until 2030 despite leaving the EU, the German finance minister has warned.
Wolfgang Schauble delivered his blustering warning as Theresa May flew into Berlin for talks with Angela Merkel and other world leaders.
Mr Schauble said post-Brexit Britain would be bound by tax rules restricting it from granting incentives to keep investors in the country.
He also insisted there will be no special deal to curb freedom of movement if the UK wants to remain part of the common market.
Signalling that the bloc is determined to take a tough line in looming negotiations, Mr Shauble – a key ally of Mrs Merkel – said: ‘Until the UK’s exit is complete, Britain will certainly have to fulfil its commitments.
‘Possibly there will be some commitments that last beyond the exit… even, in part, to 2030.’
Mrs May is expected to hold talks with Mrs Merkel and US president Barack Obama – who is on a farewell tour before handing over to Donald Trump in January – during her visit to Berlin.
The mini-summit will also be attended by the leaders of France, Italy and Spain.