The Swiss watch industry is in a buoyant mood as Baselworld 2012 gets under way. Most industry analysts and watch manufacturers expect 2012 to be a record year with strong demand in Asia and emerging countries more than off-setting any possible softness in the US or Europe.
However, there are at least three possible issues that might tamper the optimism.
- Harry Winston’s CEO Frederic de Narp tells CNBC that "deceleration of Chinese growth is a key risk"
- Thierry Stern from Patek Philippe says the continuing strength of the Swiss franc is an issue
- Other industry insiders warn that uncertainty in Iran, as well as the euro zone debt crisis may undermine consumer confidence
Some 456 watch brands represent Switzerland at the world's most important watch and jewelry fair.