Mr. Sun Dahao
Chairman of the Hong Kong Watch Industry Association
Hong Kong's watch industry began in the 1930s. The family-based workshop mainly manufactures accessories such as straps and cases, and has grown to cover all fields of watch assembly, parts production, branding, wholesale and retail, regardless of the total value of imports and exports. Seize the world's first and second respectively. Since its establishment in 1947, the Hong Kong Watch Industry Association has always been committed to uniting the industry, safeguarding the interests of its peers, promoting industry development and training talents. The Hong Kong Watch Industry Association can grow up with the entire industry. The Association has served the Hong Kong watch industry for more than 70 years and the development of the conference has been carried out smoothly. It depends on the support of the industry peers. I am also very honored to be re-elected and re-elected as Chairman of the 37th Session of the Board of Directors. I sincerely thank you for your affirmation and trust in my work.
Asia is an important hub for the world watch industry, and with the global economy improving, the decline in exports and imports of the Hong Kong watch industry in 2017 narrowed to $8.5 billion and $8.2 billion, respectively. This means that the outlook for watch manufacturing in Hong Kong is recovering. However, with the increase in production costs in the Mainland, the improvement of product quality, design and technology has become a top priority. We can build a mutually beneficial circular business circle with watch kingdoms and technical experts such as Switzerland and Japan. In the retail sector, Hong Kong remains the largest importer of Swiss watch products. In 2017, imports amounted to US$2.6 billion, up 6% from 2016. Although last year, thanks to the steady growth of visitors to Hong Kong, local consumption was optimistic, and the sales of jewellery, watches and precious gifts increased by 5.2% compared with 2016. However, due to the Sino-US trade war launched in March this year, the retail industry bears the brunt of the consumer's unease, and the renminbi has softened. Sales in June and July 2018 have recorded a significant decline.
As for the development trend of the industry, we will actively pursue the development of the high-end market, continue to develop more products and accessories of different grades and different functions, and enhance product design to meet the requirements of various types of buyers. On the other hand, in recent years, many Hong Kong companies have sold their own brands or authorized watches. Some companies have acquired Swiss brands or Swiss watch companies to expand their marketing network and acquire better technology and design. More start-ups use a web platform to let consumers match their own components to become a unique personal watch. At the same time, more and more watch retailers and distributors in Hong Kong have set up websites to provide online sales services, respond quickly to buyers at home and abroad, and even ship small-lot orders in the short term.
Even though the watch industry in Hong Kong is still affected by some trade measures, for example, the implementation of the “Swiss Made” movement in Switzerland in 2017 is defined as having a minimum Swiss value of 60% and the aforementioned Sino-US wrestling. However, Hong Kong businessmen can also take advantage of the "One Belt, One Road" development strategy and the opening of the Hong Kong-Zhuhai-Macao Bridge and the high-speed rail to seize opportunities and expand more business opportunities.
The cultivation of talents and the continuous development of the industry have always been an important topic of our concern. Due to the changes in the ageing population, geographical environment, and education system, there has been a continuous shortage of talents in the watch industry in Hong Kong in recent years. On the other hand, the parents of today's generation still believe that the watch industry is an old-fashioned industry that is running water, which hinders their children's desire to enter the market. Therefore, this Council will continue to devote more resources and actively cooperate with the education sector to promote the watch industry to young people and to practice different types of education programmes, such as the "Professional Learning Pilot Scheme - Watch Industry" - to provide students with Ideal prospects for learning and earning, IVE "Student Work Internship Program" - Let them conduct real work experience before graduation, "Business School Partnership Pilot Program" and "Quality Framework (QF) Take You into the Watch Industry" Career Path Work The high school students learn about the overall development, work scope and prospects of the watch industry through non-traditional learning platforms and make career plans for the future. On the other hand, we will also write two sets of the "Certificate of Competency Standards" in the watch industry this year as a blueprint for watch companies and training institutions to encourage them to start more courses that meet the needs of industry training.
The watch industry is one of the four major light industries in Hong Kong and the second largest watch export destination in the world. These glory are hard to come by. In the past, there have been many ups and downs, and many waves and ups and downs have been led by several generations of industry leaders. In recent years, with the impact of uncertainties in the global economy, coupled with the slowdown in the growth of the Chinese market, it has also coincided with the Sino-US trade war, which has made the industry difficult. But the way for the survival of the strong is to never retreat and struggle to go upstream. Watch and watch industry should seize the opportunity to start from the design, quality, function, marketing strategy and other aspects of the product, transforming the traditional watch into a fashion item that the buyer can't put it down or even worth collecting, and open up the high-end market. Or by the craze of smart watches, young people regain the opportunity to wear watch habits and add moderate "intelligence" to the inherent design to absorb customers of different ages and expand market share.
The Sino-US trade dispute was kicked off in March this year. At the time of publication, not only did there not be any signs of calming down, but it continued to heat up. The United States is more likely to impose tariffs on all goods imported from China. It is expected that the Hong Kong watch industry will no longer be able to Be alone. But success has always been struggling in the midst of hardships, finding the way in confusion. With the deep foundation and rich experience of Hong Kong's watch industry, the economic crisis of large and small years can still be crossed one by one. I am convinced that with our eternal belief and unity, we will still end this trade dispute. Anran transition. I hope that the industry will be mutually exclusive.