The coveted Geneva Seal was created in 1886 to identify timepieces built following Geneva’s traditional watchmaking standards. Up until now, only a watch movement manufactured in Geneva and meeting 12 strict quality criteria was needed to get the seal. But those restrictions have been tightened recently and new rules are set to come into force in June 2012. These include tighter requirements for the movement, a new emphasis on "external components," such as the finishing of the case, and new guidelines on where the watch is assembled.
Companies that currently seek the Geneva Seal include Cartier, Chopard, and Vacheron Constantin.
The changes and new rules are outlined in a 19-page summary of changes on Timelab's website. Timeline is the Seal's new administrator.