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Baselworld watch fair opens

The world’s top watch and jewellery fair opened in Basel on Thursday, with 1,800 exhibitors from 41 countries taking part.

This content was published on March 8, 2012 - 11:44
swissinfo.ch

The ribbon for the 40th Baselworld fair was cut by Economics Minister Johann Schneider-Ammann.

The Swiss watch industry is well represented, with 456 brands on show. Despite the world economic downturn, the industry increased its exports to SFr19.3 billion ($21 billion ) in 2011.

Schneider-Ammann praised Swiss watchmakers as a “shining example” for the rest of the economy.

He described the industry as a symbol of the values associated with Switzerland: reliability, accuracy and successful innovation.

The fair, which lasts until March 15, is expected to attract some 100,000 visitors and 3,000 media representatives from around the world.

It is the last time the fair is being presented in its current configuration. A new hall complex is currently under construction and will be ready for the 2013 Baselworld fair.

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