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HQ 082324

August 22, 1989

CLA-2:CO:R:C:G 082324 SR


TARIFF NO.: 4015.19.50

Mr. S.K. Lim
Sam Jung Hwagong Co., Ltd.
C.P.O. Box 2125 Seoul, Korea

RE: Diving Gloves

Dear Mr. Lim:

This is in reference to your letter dated February 3, 1988, requesting the classification of diving gloves under the Harmonized Tariff Schedule of the United States Annotated (HTSUSA). A sample produced in Korea was submitted.


The merchandise at issue is diving gloves. The glove is a seamed glove that is made from a foamed rubber that has been vulcanized and blown. The rubber is laminated on both sides with a knit man-made fabric. There are small plastic dots on the palm side to provide grip.


What is the classification of diving gloves?


Classification of goods under the HTSUSA, is governed by the General Rules of Interpretation (GRI), taken in order. GRI 3(b) provides that composite goods consisting of different materials or made up of different components shall be classified as if they consisted of the material or component which gives them their essential character. The gloves at issue are composed of rubber and textile materials. In this case the rubber imparts the
essential character. The gloves are primarily made up of the rubber foam and are used for scuba diving to keep the hands dry and protected. The textile does play an important role in protecting the rubber and making it easier to put the glove on over the hand, however, the rubber provides the most important function.

Heading 4015, HTSUSA, provides for articles of apparel and clothing accessories (including gloves), for all purposes, of vulcanized rubber other than hard rubber. The Explanatory Notes provide the official interpretation of the tariff at the international level. The Explanatory Notes to heading 4015, HTSUSA, provide that this heading covers articles of apparel and clothing accessories (including gloves), e.g., protective gloves and clothing for surgeons, radiologists, divers, etc., whether assembled by means of an adhesive or by sewing or otherwise obtained. It also states that the goods may be of rubber, with parts of textile fabric, when the rubber is the constituent giving the goods their essential character. Because the rubber does impart the essential character of the gloves at issue they are classifiable under this heading.


The diving gloves at issue are classifiable under subheading 4015.19.50, HTSUSA, which provides for articles of apparel and clothing accessories (including gloves), for all purposes, of vulcanized rubber other than hard rubber, gloves, other, other. The rate of duty is 14 percent ad valorem.


John Durant, Director

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