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Discussion Starter #1
Can someone tell me what makes a watch movement Made in Japan?

I know that they are laws for when one can use "Swiss Made" and wanted to know if Japan has a similar law.

Thank you.
 
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This is a subtle question.

A watch movement and a watch are different things.

The words Swiss Made is used with reference to a complete watch whereas you're asking a question about a movement. Subtle but big difference.

Movement wise, I don't really know what's the definition for Swiss Movt or Japan Movt on the dial. It's probably just that, a made in Switzerland or Japan movement, given the economies of scale and technology lead of these huge factories.

However, you can be pretty sure the watch not assembled in Switzerland or Japan. I won't be so hung up on the exact origin of the parts or the place of assembly because such watches are usually on the low end of the watch market and as we all know, anything goes at that price point.

If, however, the dial says Japan followed by the serial, I'm confident it's made in Japan and probably >$200 retail. The Japanese place great pride on their country's name and I've not known them to be duplicitous in this respect.

IMHO, there's that last bit of difference in quality between an overseas facility and a factory located in Japan. You just can't replicate the work ethic and demand for excellence in a Japanese worker elsewhere. Maybe that's why all the higher-end models are all made in Japan. This is true for Seiko, Citizen, Casio and Orient.
 

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Discussion Starter #3
Thank you for your information.

As you pointed out, I am looking for the difinition of having the movement coutry of origin on the dial.

I wanted to specifically know if Japan has anything close to the Swiss oridinacen that set out when you can use Swiss on a watch.
 

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Now, THAT's a good link! Springboard you to other sources as well. Thanks for sharing, koimaster!

anytime. ran across that a while back and kept it bookmarked.
 

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Discussion Starter #7
Koimaster,

Thank you for that web-site; however, I have been through it extensively and was still unable to find what are the requirements for calling a movement Japanese made. I actually wrote them a letter to see if they will respond as they do not have an e-mail address on the site. Most of the web-sites that I have tried to find while reading the JCWA web-site do not exist.

Hopefully they will get back to me with the legal requirements of what is required to call a movement Japenese made.
 

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Koimaster,

Thank you for that web-site; however, I have been through it extensively and was still unable to find what are the requirements for calling a movement Japanese made. I actually wrote them a letter to see if they will respond as they do not have an e-mail address on the site. Most of the web-sites that I have tried to find while reading the JCWA web-site do not exist.

Hopefully they will get back to me with the legal requirements of what is required to call a movement Japenese made.


http://www.faqs.org/rulings/rulings1993HQ0734758.html


I might add that Japan apparently allows items made in Asia but in a factory with either Japanese ownership or oversight to be labeled Made in Japan. These may be sold in countries other than the US since US Customs requires the country of final assembly of a watch movement to be the country of origin.

Dear Mr. Bernstein:

This is in response to your letter dated July 2, 1992, directed to the National Import Specialist Division of the U.S. Customs Service at the New York Seaport Area regarding the country of origin marking requirements for imported watches. That office forwarded your letter to Customs Headquarters for a response.

FACTS:

In your letter you ask several questions regarding the proper country of origin marking for watches. First you want to know if you can indicate the country of origin of leather watch straps by marking them with stickers which read "Made in Hong Kong". Your letter contains a photostatic copy of the actual sticker which you propose to mark the straps. The copy of the sticker is oval in shape and the letters measure slightly less than 1/16th of an inch. The quality of copy of the sticker is poor and appears very dark and cloudy. You also want to know whether it is acceptable to mark the back cover of a watch case with a sticker which reads "JAPAN MOVEMENT". A copy of this sticker is also photostated in your letter. The letters on this marking measure about an 1/8 of an inch and are very clear. Finally, you inquire as to whether it is proper to mark a watch with a sticker on the back cover of the watch case, which reads "Swiss parts assembled in China."

ISSUE:

Are the stickers described above which are to be used to indicate the country of origin of watches acceptable?

LAW AND ANALYSIS:

Section 304 of the Tariff Act of 1930, as amended (19 U.S.C. 1304) provides that, unless excepted, every article of foreign origin imported into the U.S. shall be marked in a conspicuous place as legibly, indelibly, and permanently as the nature of the article (or container) will permit, in such a manner as to indicate to the ultimate purchaser in the U.S. the English name of the country of origin of the article. Congressional intent in enacting 19 U.S.C. 1304 was that the ultimate purchaser should be able to know by an inspection of the marking on the imported goods the country of which the goods is the product. "The evident purpose is to mark the goods so that at the time of purchase the ultimate purchaser may, by knowing where the goods were produced, be able to buy or refuse to buy them, if such marking should influence his will." United States v. Friedlaender & Co., 27 C.C.P.A. 297 at 302 (1940). C.A.D. 104 (1940).

Part 134, Customs Regulations (19 CFR Part 134), implements the country of origin marking requirements and exceptions of 19 U.S.C. 1304. As provided in section 134.41(b), Customs Regulations (19 CFR 134.41(b)), the country of origin marking is considered conspicuous if the ultimate purchaser in the U.S, is able to find the marking easily and read it without strain. That section further provides that the degree of permanence should be at least sufficient to insure that in any reasonably foreseeable circumstance the marking shall remain on the article until it reaches the ultimate purchaser unless it is deliberately removed.

As a general rule, marking requirements are best met by marking worked into the article at the time of manufacture. For example, its suggested that the country of origin on metal articles be die sunk, molded in or etched. See 19 CFR 134.41. However, the Customs Service normally permits any reasonable method of marking that will remain on the article during handling until it reaches the ultimate purchaser. This includes the use of paper stickers or pressure sensitive labels and string tags. See HQ 703500, March 10, 1990. If paper stickers or pressure sensitive labels are used, section 134.44, Customs Regulations (19 CFR 134.44), provides that they must be affixed in a conspicuous place and so securely that unless deliberately removed they will remain on the article while it is in storage or on display and until it is delivered to the ultimate purchaser.

The country of origin marking for a watch may be placed on the face of the dial or on the outside surface of the back cover of the watch case. An adhesive sticker may used for section 304 marking on a watch so long as the sticker is affixed so securely that unless deliberately removed it will remain on the watch while it is in storage or display until it is delivered to the ultimate purchaser. The marking must also be conspicuous and legible so that the ultimate purchaser can make an informed purchasing decision. Because we do not have an actual sample of the watch marked with the sticker, we cannot rule on whether the marking is sufficiently permanent. However, based on the copy of the sticker, we find that the size is large enough and the letters are clear enough so that an ultimate purchaser could easily find the marking and read it without strain. Accordingly, if the sticker is placed on the outside of the back of the watch case, the conspicuous requirement of 19 CFR 134.41 would be satisfied.

With respect to the watch strap sticker, again because we do not have an actual sample, and the quality of the copy is poor we are unable to judge whether the marking on the sticker is conspicuous, legible, and permanent. Although the size of the letters in the marking was probably adequate, on the copy we received the marking appears cloudy, dark, and not clear enough to be read without strain. We note that this could be caused by the poor quality of the copy, and that the marking on the actual sticker may be acceptable.

For country of origin marking purposes under 19 U.S.C. 1304, Customs considers the country of origin of watches to be the country of manufacture of the watch movements. See HQ 731546, October 27, 1988. Customs has also ruled that when unassembled parts of a watch movement from one country are assembled in a second country, the country of assembly is the country of origin for marking purposes under 19 U.S.C. 1304. See HQ 708386, May 2, 1978. In this case, it appears that parts from Switzerland are sent to China where they are assembled into a completed watch movement. If so, the country of origin of the watch is China and not Switzerland. The proposed marking, "Swiss parts assembled in China" is unacceptable because it does not indicate the country of origin of the watch and may mislead ultimate purchasers into thinking that the watch was made in Switzerland. The term "Assembled in" ordinarily does not indicate the origin of an article. Accordingly, the watch must be marked with China. The alternative markings, "Movt China" or "China Movt" are also acceptable.
 
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