In these times cheap Chinese watches – often degraded and mocked – are not longer the only things China has to offer. Is there a new concurrent for German and Swiss watch producers?

The bare polished stainless steel bracelet with clasp looks great on the wrist. Each self-respected man wears such a classic wristwatch though German and Swiss products are the favored ones world wide especially by rich people. Even the Chinese were some of the main consumers for a long time. Political officials also love to show themselves with these splendid manufactures in particular in public. However some of these expensive pieces did not find their way legally to the politicians’ hands. Often they were used for corruption.

Since not long ago China is doing a new kind of trend. The government is declaring war on corruption. Whoever is showing off with such a valuable watch is spotted by bloggers what means final political stop caused by photos. As a consequence the watches import stopped.

An example for such a sad story is Yang Dacai whose nickname is „Brother Wristwatch“. Once the Minister for industrial safety of Shaanxi in the North West of China he is given 14 years of probation by a court in Xian because of “abuse of administration“. Before that it came forth that he owned 11 watches in all.

The reason why European watches serve well as resource of corruption is not only the status or quest for luxury. Notably the shortage of comparable products fabricated in China itself is doing its bit. For a long time Chinese Watch producer were famous for their plagiarisms of European brand leaders: Melodic names were just distracting from low quality.

What is ticking inside the watchcases of “Netwon & Sons“ or “Constatin Durmont“ is not yet as well engineered as Swiss horology. The sale of these brands is performed exclusively by websites and home shopping channels. Especially there are some simple tricks used by online shopping sides to attract self-described bargain hunters: within the product sheets some nonbinding price recommendations are offered but usual they are way above the normal selling price. Furthermore this normal price is disproportionate high compared to the quality.

Among the shades of these prejudices and dubious sales strategies the Chinese watchmaking industry made many progresses. In the meanwhile mechanic wristwatches of high quality are produced with high complications such as „Tourbillions“. This fact is not so much surprising.

Source: Wirtschaftswoche