Some of the largest supermarket chains have announced their arrival in Serbia, and the German Lidl can be expected to arrive first, State Secretary at the Ministry of Trade and Agriculture Vladimir Matovic stated.
As he said, Lidl has already registered the company in Serbia and is currently deciding which cities to open stores in. He also added that the construction of facilities was expected to begin soon.
- We expect other supermarket chains to show interest as well because the Serbian market is completely open to foreign investments in the area of trade and is legally harmonized with the European standards - Matovic told Tanjug.
We will continue improving the market so as to attract new investments, he added.
According to him, the arrival of retail chains in Serbia will improve competitiveness, which will lead to more favorable prices and drop in trade margins.
Matovic named the example of the Belgian supermarket chain Delhaize, which purchased Delta Maxi for EUR 934 million in 2011 and raised the quality of services by introducing new methodologies, thus assigning the same task to its competitors and benefitting consumers in the process.
- Including Delhaize's acquisition, investments in the trade sector in 2011 exceeded EUR 1 billion - Matovic underlined, adding that the second biggest investor was Mercator-S company with EUR 57 million worth of investments
These two companies are followed by Germany's Metro with EUR 21 million investments and domestic supermarket chains DIS with EUR 11 million, Univerexport with EUR 5 million and SOS markets with EUR 150,000.