Swiss Watch Federation expects record-breaking 2005

The Federation of the Swiss Watch Industry FH expects 2005 to be another record-breaking year.

The total value of Swiss watch exports worldwide in 2004 topped 11 billion Swiss francs (about $8.5 billion), an all-time record, the Federation was told by FH president Jean-Daniel Pasche, at its annual meeting June 30, in Soleure, Switzerland. By the end of 2005, 12 billion Swiss francs (about $9.2 billion) “could well be attained, or least be well within reach,” he said.

The year 2004 also finished with “a nice increase in exports,” a trend expected to continue in 2005.

“At the end of 2004, we predicted an increase in exports for 2005 of between six and seven percent,” he noted. “The five first months of 2005 saw an 13.7 percent increase,” supporting FH’s forecast of another annual gain at year’s end.

“The Asian market continues to expand,” noted Pasche, “and the United States still records an increase, though less apparent than in 2004. Business in Europe is getting back its color, which is most encouraging for our traditional markets.”

He also noted “that other regions of the world are showing a growing interest in our products,” citing specifically eastern European countries, Russia, and Latin America, especially Mexico.

“Hopefully, external factors—and here, I am thinking in particular about the rate of the dollar—won’t interfere with this positive outlook,” said Pasche.