United States International Trade Commision Rulings And Harmonized Tariff Schedule
faqs.org  Rulings By Number  Rulings By Category  Tariff Numbers
faqs.org > Rulings and Tariffs Home > Rulings By Number > 1990 HQ Rulings > HQ 0084687 - HQ 0084763 > HQ 0084727

Previous Ruling Next Ruling

HQ 084727

August 25, 1989

CLA-2 CO:R:C:G: 084727 DPS


TARIFF NO.: 5703.10.0000, 5701.10.2010

M. Catch Molina
Edward Molina Designs, Inc.
196 Selleck Street
Stamford, Connecticut 06902

RE: HTSUSA Classification of wool rug

Dear M. Molina:

Your letter of May 9, 1989, to our New York office regarding the tariff classification of wool carpeting from Singapore has been referred to this office for a ruling under the Harmonized Tariff Schedule of the United States Annotated (HTSUSA). A carpet sample was included with your inquiry.


The carpet sample submitted is manufactured by using a hand held, air powered tufting gun. The sample at issue is tufted, and has a pile content of 100 percent wool. As stated by the importer, the pile rugs to be imported from Singapore, are in the cut or loop style with pile heights between 3/8 and 5/8 of an inch.

With regard to the method of manufacture, the importer states: "The mill technician manufactures using an air powered hand gun, tufting yarn placement from front to back. After tufting, the secondary back (cotton scrim mesh) is latexed to the primary back (monks cloth). The rug is then finished by hand shearing or carving (both power tools) on the face." These rugs are principally used as decorative finishes for both residential and commercial applications.


Whether the carpeting at issue is considered to be machine- made or hand-made; whether the carpeting at issue is properly classifiable as tufted carpeting of wool under subheading 5703.10.0000, HTSUSA; or as knotted carpeting of wool, in which the tufts were inserted and knotted by hand or by means of a hand tool, under subheading 5701.10.2010, HTSUSA.


The General Rules for the Interpretation of the Harmonized System (GRI's) govern classification under the HTSUSA. According to GRI 1, the primary consideration in determining whether merchandise should be classified in a heading should be given to the language of the heading and any relevant chapter or section notes. The subheadings at issue in this case are:

(a) 5701.10.2010, HTSUSA, carpets and other textile floor coverings, knotted, whether or not made up: of wool or fine animal hair: other: hand- hooked, that is, in which the tufts were inserted and knotted by hand or by means of a hand tool; and

(b) 5703.10.0000, HTSUSA, carpets and other textile floor coverings, tufted, whether or not made up: of wool or fine animal hair.

If the wool rugs at issue are knotted and considered to be hand- made, then subheading 5701.10.2010, HTSUSA would apply. If not, then subheading 5703.10.0000, HTSUSA is applicable. Here, the importer states that the technician uses an air powered, hand held tool for tufting, and power tools for finishing (shearing and carving).

For tariff purposes, Customs considers a powered hand tool to be a machine, distinct from the "hand tool" referred to in subheading 5701.10.2010, HTSUSA, which is a manually operated instrument/tool. This provision is intended to include carpeting and other textile floor covering items which are truly hand- hooked, that is, in which the tufts are inserted and knotted by hand or by means of a hand tool, where the tool serves as an instrument, which is driven manually. Here, a mechanized tool inserts the tufts. There is no manual manipulation of the yarn, other than holding the tool and pushing a button. Because the subject carpeting is not "hand-hooked," nor are the tufts inserted and knotted by hand or by means of a manually driven hand tool, the subject carpeting is not classifiable in subheading 5701.10.2010, HTSUSA. Rather, the carpeting at issue is manufactured by using a hand-held, air-powered machine, which is considered to be a machine, not a "hand tool," for tariff purposes. In applying GRI 1 to this case, it is clear that subheading 5703.10.0000, HTSUSA, most accurately describes the subject merchandise.


In light of the foregoing, the subject merchandise is properly classifiable in subheading 5703.10.0000, HTSUSA, as tufted carpeting, whether or not made up, of wool. The corresponding rate of duty is 7 percent ad valorem.

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


John Durant, Director
Commercial Rulings Division

Previous Ruling Next Ruling

See also: