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HQ 083285


December 28, 1989

CLA-2 CO:R:C:G 083285 CRS

CATEGORY: CLASSIFICATION

TARIFF NO.: 5906, 5903, 4008.21.0000, 3921.90.1500

Mr. Larry Self
Arthur J. Fritz & Co.
P.O. Box 580310
Tulsa, OK 74158

RE: Coated Fabrics

Dear Mr. Self:

This is in reply to your letter dated August 26, 1988, in which you requested a binding ruling under the Harmonized Tariff Schedule of the Unites States Annotated (HTSUSA). Two samples were submitted with your request.

FACTS:

The articles in question are coated fabrics imported from the United Kingdom. The first item is wide seal material (hereinafter "wide seal"), constructed from a woven textile fabric and is presumed to be made from man-made material. The fabric is completely encased in a noncellular substance containing more than 50 percent rubber. The material weighs approximately 2300 grams per square meter and appears to contain less than 50 percent textile. The purpose of the textile is to prevent the article from stretching and tearing, and to provide reinforcement.

The second item, style 1119/8223 (hereinafter "style 1119"), consists of a woven textile substrate of 50 percent nylon, 50 percent resin, which has been coated on both sides with polyurethane plastics material. The fabric weighs 400 grams per square meter and will be imported in rolls.

ISSUE:

Whether the articles in question are coated fabrics such that they are classifiable in headings 5906 and 5903, HTSUSA, or whether they are classifiable in Chapters 40 and 39, HTSUSA.

LAW AND ANALYSIS:

Articles are classified under the HTSUSA according to the General Rules of Interpretation (GRIs). GRI 1 provides that the classification of articles is to be determined according to the terms of the headings and any relevant section or chapter notes and, provided that the headings or notes do not otherwise require, according to the remaining GRIs taken in order.

Heading 5906, HTSUSA, covers rubberized textile fabrics, other than those of heading 5902. Rubberized textile fabrics of heading 5906 are defined in Note 4, Chapter 59, HTSUSA, which provides in pertinent part:

(a) Textile fabrics impregnated, coated, covered or laminated with rubber:

(i) Weighing not more than 1,500 g/m; or

(ii) Weighing more than 1,500 g/m and containing more than 50 percent by weight of textile material;

Since the wide seal fabric weighs more than 1,500 g/m and less than 50 percent by weight of textile materials it cannot be classified in heading 5906.

Heading 4008, HTSUSA, covers plates, sheets, strip, rods and profile shapes, of vulcanized rubber other than hard rubber. General Note 5 to Chapter 40, Harmonized Commodity Description and Coding System, Explanatory Notes, extends the coverage of the Chapter to certain products including:

(c) Textile fabrics (as defined in Note 1 to Chapter 59) impregnated, coated, covered or laminated with rubber, weighing more than 1,500 g/m and containing 50% or less by weight of textile material.

The wide seal fabric is made from woven fabric of Chapters 50 to 55 and therefore meets the definition of "textile fabrics" contained in Note 1, Chapter 59. Moreover, while it weighs more than 1,500 g/m, less than 50 percent of this represents the weight of the textile fabric. Consequently, the wide seal fabric is classifiable in heading 4008, HTSUSA.

Heading 5903, HTSUSA, covers textile fabrics impregnated, coated, covered or laminated with plastics, other than tire cord of heading 5902. Style 1119 is made from a woven nylon fabric coated on both sides with polyurethane. However, Note 2, Chapter 59 provides in pertinent part that the heading applies to all such fabrics other than:

(3) Products in which the textile fabric is either completely embedded in plastics or entirely coated or covered on both sides with such material, provided that such coating or covering can be seen with the naked eye with no account being taken of any resulting change of color (chapter 39).

Since style 1119 has been coated on both sides, it cannot be classified in heading 5903.

The Explanatory Note to heading 5903 provides in relevant part that:

Products not meeting the requirements of [heading 5903] usually fall in Chapter 39. However, textile fabric coated or covered on both sides with plastics where the coating or covering cannot be seen with the naked eye, or can be seen only by reason of a resulting change in colour, usually falls in Chapters 50 to 55, 58 or 60.

The coating applied to style 1119 is visible to the naked eye as it can be seen when comparing the uncoated selvage with the rest of the fabric. However,the coating has not caused the material to change color, except to the extent that it has dulled the black color of the fabric. Nevertheless, it has altered the surface character of the fabric. By filling in the crevices in the plain weave fabric, the coating has caused the appearance of the weave seemingly to change from a checkerboard pattern to a dot matrix. Consequently, it is classifiable in Chapter 39, HTSUSA.

HOLDING:

The wide seal material is classifiable in subheading 4008.21.0000, HTSUSA, under the provision for plates, sheets, strip, rods and profile shapes, of vulcanized rubber other than hard rubber, of noncellular rubber, plates, sheets and strip, and is dutiable at a rate of 3.4 percent ad valorem.

The style 1119 material is classifiable in subheading 3921.90.1500, HTSUSA, under the provision for other plates, sheets, film, foil and strip, of plastics, other, combined with textile materials and weighing not more than 1.492 kg/m, products with textile components in which man-made fibers predominate by weight over any other single textile fiber, other. The article is dutiable at a rate of 8.5 percent ad valorem and the textile category is 229.

The designated textile and apparel category may be subdivided into parts. If so, visa and quota requirements applicable to the subject merchandise may be affected. Since part categories are the result of international bilateral agreements which are subject to frequent renegotiations and changes, to obtain the most current information available, we suggest that you check, close to the time of shipment, the Status Report on Current Import Quotas (Restraint Levels), an internal issuance of the Customs Service, which is available for inspection at your local Customs office.

Due to the changeable nature of the statistical annotation (the ninth and tenth digits of the classification) and the restraint (quota/visa) categories, you should contact your local Customs office prior to importation of this merchandise to determine the current status of any import restraints or requirements.

Sincerely,


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