Federation: Exports decline at slower rate

First published: 04-02-2010

The Federation of the Swiss Watch Industry has revealed today that Switzerland's watch exports fell by 22 per cent in 2009 when compared to the previous year, signalling a slowing down of dropping sales equal to CHF 13.2 billion (£7.8 billion).

In the last months of 2009, particularly around the Christmas period, there was a major recovery when compared to the earlier months, the leading organisation has concluded.

Sales of watches were mainly in the mid-range markets, or timepieces costing between £175 and £300, meaning that the usual brands of Rolex and Tag Heuer were largely turned down.

However, only South Korea saw an increase in demand out of the 15 major markets for Swiss watches.

Double-digit declines, however, were registered in Hong Kong, the US, Europe, the Middle East and other parts of Asia.

A spokesman for the organisation said: "2010 should see a turnaround for Swiss watch exports. It will however be modest and will only really be felt in the second half of the year."

Earlier this month, a report by Hodinkee revealed that a very rare Patek Philippe watch has been created with Moscow being replaced with Doha on the orders of the government of Qatar.

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