After the EU imposed drastic sanctions on Russia in response to the conflict in Ukraine, Switzerland, which has always maintained neutrality in geopolitical conflicts, decided to follow the general trend.
Switzerland has adopted the European Union‘s sanctions on the export of luxury goods to Russia, acknowledging that some Swiss companies could be hit hard.
The European Union on Tuesday imposed a fourth wave of sanctions, which Switzerland said it would match. The country is not part of the EU and has a long tradition of neutrality on war, but it has nevertheless aligned itself with the waves of sanctions imposed by the EU.
The new measures “will come into force in the next few days“, the Swiss government said in a statement. “The ban on exports of luxury goods contained in the new sanctions affects only a small part of Switzerland’s global exports in this area. However, specific companies could be seriously affected,” Berne said.
Watchmaking is Switzerland’s third largest export sector, although far behind the pharmaceutical sector viagra para mulher. Russia is the 17th largest export market for Swiss watchmakers, with 260 million Swiss francs (250 million euros) worth of exports last year, according to statistics from the watch industry federation, representing about 1% of total Swiss watch exports.
However, exports are only a partial indication of sales because wealthy luxury watch lovers often spend a lot of money on tourist trips to Switzerland. Even before the sanctions were imposed, several major Swiss brands, including Rolex, had already halted their exports to Russia.
Last week, the Swatch Group, which owns Tissot, Omega and Breguet, closed its shops in Russia, having already suspended exports the week before. Richemont, owner of the jewellery house Cartier and luxury watches such as IWC and Jaeger-LeCoultre, also suspended their activities in Russia.
Featured photo : © Roman Ivanov