The 35th Hong Kong Watch & Clock Fair opened today in an atmosphere soured by dramatically falling sales to the island city state and mainland China.
But it is not all gloom. Hong Kong remains the biggest market in the world for Swiss makers, importing almost CHF 1.4 billion’s worth of watches in the first seven months of 2016 (down 27.5% on 2015).
Add China’s imports of CHF 700 million over the same period (down 17.5%), and it is clear the Hong Kong exhibition has plenty of life in it yet.
This year the fair features more than 800 exhibitors from 27 countries and regions, including first-time participating countries and brands from Australia, Hungary, Iran, Lithuania, Monaco, Thailand and Turkey.
A highlight of the five-day fair is the Salon de TE area for premium and unique watach designers, which has five thematic zones: World Brand Piazza, Chic & Trendy, Craft Treasure, Renaissance Moment and Wearable Tech.
World Brand Piazza presents artisan masterpieces from 13 renowned international brands, including Blancpain, BOVET, Breguet, BVLGARI, Chopard, CORUM, DeWitt, FRANCK MULLER, Glashutte Original, H. Moser & Cie, Jaeger-LeCoultre, Piaget and Zenith.
During the fair period, the Hong Kong Trade Development Council has organised more than 70 buyer missions, comprising about 4,000 buyers from 50 countries and regions, including renowned watch and clock manufacturers, buyers and retailers, such as Rivoli Group from the United Arab Emirates, Abiste from Japan, Dakota Watch from the United States, Birks Group from Canada, Gmarket from South Korea, S Bacher & Co. from South Africa and Crystal Time from Singapore.