Avi E. Soffer, founder and director of Operations of The Watch Dealers Network (TheWDN.com), says he has begun discussions with The U.S. Department of Homeland Security, customs division in an effort to lower taxes and tariffs on watch and jewelry imports and exports between the U.S. and other countries.
“This is our way of recommending to the government a ‘stimulus plan’ that will directly benefit thousands of jewelry and watch professionals, who account for billions of dollars a year into the U.S. economy.” Soffer said in a statement. “For years there has been an increasing demand for the global marketplaces to unite and be able to trade watches more efficiently. Given all of the efforts by the current administration to improve economic conditions it makes sense for industry insiders to get involved and suggest ways the government can better assist their specific industries.”
The typical tax and duties on a watch or jewelry item imported from Europe or the Far East costs between 1.5 percent – 3 percent of the item’s value, before shipping, broker, and other government fees, Soffer said. As profit margins on individual sales are significantly less than most other luxury items (average of 9 percent), often times the costs of import/export diminishes overall profits by 50 percent – 90 percent.
“The same taxes and duties that are commonly imposed on higher profit yielding luxury items are currently being applied to the less profitable watch/jewelry import. Lowering tariffs has the potential of adding billions of additional dollars into the U.S. economy via an increase in watch and jewelry trade between the U.S. and the worldwide markets,” Soffer said. “If Customs (DHS) and the manufacturers will work with us in making it more cost effective for the average watch and jewelry professional to capitalize on the global buying and selling opportunities then we will all pay less, and can pass those savings on to the customer resulting in a significant boost in the watch and jewelry business – all the while helping the economy.”
Soffer says he is in direct contact with the DHS with whom he has had a prior relationship with as a watch specifications consultant and plans to meet department heads in Washington D.C. in March.
The Watch Dealers Network is a trade only B2B online network providing watch trading and added-value services.