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HQ 084264

July 19, 1989

CLA-2 CO:R:C:G 084264 CB


TARIFF NO.: 6307.90.9050; 5609.00.1000; 5609.00.3000

Ms. Anne Twan
ASC Sampling Inc.
5555 Casgrain
Montreal, Quebec
Canada H2T 1Y1

RE: Reconsideration of NYRL 834668 and NYRL 835985

Dear Ms. Twan:

This ruling letter is in response to your letter of February 20, 1989, requesting a reconsideration of the classification rulings issued by New York under the Harmonized Tariff Schedule of the United States Annotated (HTSUSA), for decorative trimmings charts and thread sample booklets.


The products involved are charts containing decorative, man- made fiber trimmings, and booklets displaying variously colored samples of sewing thread. The trimmings chart is of Canadian manufacture and contains a variety of finished decorative trimmings which are produced in the United States, as well as samples of the yarns from which they are made. The cardboard booklets are used to exhibit the color spectrum of sewing thread. The thread is manufactured in the United States and the color chart is manufactured in Canada using the American-made thread. The thread will be either 100% cotton or 100% spun polyester.


Whether the subject merchandise was correctly classified under the New York ruling?


Classification of merchandise under the HTSUSA is in accordance with the General Rules of Interpretation (GRI's), taken in order. GRI 1 provides that the starting point is the terms of the headings and subheadings of the tariff and any relevant section or chapter notes.

The inquirer claims that the products should be classified in heading 4905, HTSUSA, which provides for maps and hydrographic or similar charts of all kinds, including atlases, wall maps, topographical plans and globes, printed. However, the instant goods do not portray any physical or political geographical features. It is Customs position that the subject charts and booklets are not the type of article intended to be classified under this heading.

Various headings of the tariff provide for components of the charts and booklets. Heading 4823, HTSUSA, provides for other articles of paper or paperboard. Heading 4802, HTSUSA, provides for binders, folders, and albums for samples, of paper or paperboard. With respect to both the thread sample booklet and the trimmings chart, heading 5609, providing for articles of yarn, is applicable. In the case of the trimmings chart, heading 6307, providing for other made-up textile articles, also applies.

Clearly, heading 4911, HTSUSA, provides for other printed matter. The printing and paperboard are of importance in the use of the goods to advertise and sell the merchandise. The paperboard holds the samples and the printing informs the customer as to which colors are available and the number of the product. However, the trimmings and thread samples are equally essential in the use of the display. Neither of the sample displays appears to be fully covered by any one heading; therefore, they cannot be classified in accordance with GRI 1.

GRI 3(b) provides that composite goods consisting of different materials are to be classified as if consisting of that material that gives the goods their essential character. According to the Explanatory Notes to GRI 3(b), the essential character may be determined by the nature of the material or component, its bulk, quantity, weight or value, or by the role of a constituent material in relation to the use of the goods. The Explanatory Notes constitute the official interpretation of the tariff at the international level.

With regard to the subject samples, comparison of the trimmings and thread portions with the nontextile materials indicates that it is the trimming and thread portions that provide the essential character of the goods. The charts and books are used to sell the trimmings and thread. Without the samples, the displays would have nothing to show.

A GRI 3(b) composite good determination is also required with regard to the trimmings chart. The upper portion of the
chart contains segments of finished trimming, a fabric; the bottom portion contains samples of the yarns from which the trimmings are made. Of the two, the finished trimmings comprise the essential character of the chart since they show the product being marketed in its final form.


The trimmings chart is classifiable under subheading 6307.90.9050, HTSUSA, which provides for other made up textile articles, other, other. The rate of duty, for Canadian FTA- eligible goods, is 6.3 percent ad valorem.

The applicable subheading for the thread sample booklet, if with cotton thread, is 5609.00.1000, HTSUSA, which provides for articles of yarn, of cotton. The rate of duty, for Canadian FTA- eligible goods, is 5.2 percent ad valorem.

The polyester thread sample booklet is classifiable in 5609.00.3000, HTSUSA, which provides for articles of yarn, of man-made fibers. The rate of duty, for Canadian FTA-eligible goods, is 8.1 percent ad valorem.

NYRL 835985 and 834668 are modified as stated above.


John Durant, Director
Commercial Rulings Division

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