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Richemont cuts jobs amid tough conditions

Swiss luxury goods giant Richemont will cut 210 jobs at its Piaget and Vacheron Constantin high-end watchmakers, a union source said on Monday.

Richemont cuts jobs amid tough conditions
File photo: Richard Juilliart/AFP

The world's second-biggest luxury group had warned earlier this month that it would have to deal with overcapacity issues as sales of exclusive watches were facing such a tough time it was buying some pieces back from retailers.
   
The Unia union plans to hold meetings Tuesday with staff at the four facilities affected, a union leader told the Swiss news agency ATS.
   
At the beginning of 2016, Richment announced it would cut 300 to 350 jobs, including at its top brand Cartier. But in the end, accounting for retirements and retraining, it only dismissed 100 staff.
   
In the first half of its fiscal year which ended September 30th, Richement earned 540 million euros ($579 million) in net profit, a drop of 51 percent from the same time last year, as sales slid by 13 percent to 5.1 billion euros.
   
The luxury watch sector has seen tough times since Chinese authorities banned giving expensive gifts as part of an anti-corruption crackdown in 2013, followed by democracy protests in 2014 hitting sales in Hong Kong.

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WORKING IN SWITZERLAND

Which countries does Switzerland have working holiday visa agreements with?

Switzerland has made reciprocal agreements regarding working holiday visas with several countries. Here's what you need to know.

Which countries does Switzerland have working holiday visa agreements with?

Over the past few decades, countries around the globe have rolled out ‘working holiday visa’ agreements.

These visa schemes, largely targeted at young people, allow people to work and live in a particular country, usually for a set period of time and pursuant to certain conditions.

In recent years, Switzerland has expanded its own form of a ‘working holiday visa’, although there are some important differences to be aware of.

Unlike some of the better known schemes like those in place in Australia, applicants are discouraged from moving around and are generally required to stay with the one employer for the duration.

The goal of the visa scheme is to allow applicants to “expand their occupational and linguistic skills in Switzerland”.

The visa scheme runs for 18 months and cannot be extended.

Which countries does Switzerland have working holiday visa agreements with?

The agreements are made between countries, meaning your fate will depend on whether your government has at some point struck a deal with Switzerland.

EXPLAINED: What’s the difference between permanent residence and Swiss citizenship?

If you are from the European Union or an EFTA country (Iceland, Liechtenstein, Norway and Switzerland), then you will be able to live and work in Switzerland as is – and will not need to go through this process.

If you come from outside the EU, you will only be able to apply for this visa if you are a citizen of the following countries:

Australia, Argentina, Canada, Chile, Indonesia, Japan, Monaco, New Zealand, the Philippines, Russia, South Africa, Tunisia, Ukraine and the United States.

What does ‘reciprocal’ mean in this context? 

Where these agreements have been struck, they have entitled citizens of both countries to certain rights and permissions in the other country. 

However, while these arrangements might be reciprocal, they are not identical. 

For instance, while citizens of Australia can enter Switzerland and work, the rules for Swiss citizens in Australia are significantly different. 

Therefore, if considering each program, be sure to study all of the relevant details as these will change from country to country and from agreement to agreement. 

More information is available at the following link. 

EXPLAINED: How to get a working holiday visa in Switzerland

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