Schwarz Group-owned discounter Lidl is expected to open its first 15 stores in Serbian cities over the next two years, Serbian trade minister Rasim Ljajic told a local newspaper.

He also expects the opening of Serbia’s first Ikea store by the end of next year.

The minister said it was important for the government to reduce the “bureaucratic hurdles” to foreign investment.

Ljajic said the authorities had taken measures to prevent further price fluctuation.