Revision Of The Ordinance On The Use Of The Name 'Swiss' For Watches


The Ordinance on the Use of the Name "Swiss" for Watches (the "Swiss Made" Ordinance for Watches) adopted in 1971 regulates the use of the indication of source "Swiss" for watches. The Federal Council approved a partial revision of this ordinance on 17 June 2016 and will put it into force on 1 January 2017. This strengthens the "Swiss Made" designation for watches and watch movements in line with the new 'Swissness' legislation.

The designations "Swiss" and "Swiss Made" on a watch represent the Swiss art of watchmaking. Consumers are generally prepared to pay up to 20 per cent more for a Swiss watch, and even up to 50 per cent more for certain mechanical ones. This has been shown by various studies, in particular those by the ETH Zurich and the University of St. Gallen. The revised "Swiss Made" Ordinance seeks to reinforce the association to Switzerland for watches being promoted as "Swiss Made" in order to counteract the risk of free riders. By doing so, the good reputation of the "Made in Switzerland" brand for watches will be strengthened together with Switzerland as a location for production.

In future, at least 60 per cent of the costs of manufacturing a complete watch (as an end product) must be generated in Switzerland - unlike previously, whereby this rule applied only to the watch movement itself. The movement remains important, however, as at least half of its value must consist of components made in Switzerland, and at least 60 per cent of the costs to manufacture it must be generated in Switzerland. In...

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