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HQ 085266


September 20, 1989

CLA-2:CO:R:C:G 085266 SR

CATEGORY: CLASSIFICATION

TARIFF NO.: 6802.92.00

Mr. Michael O'Neill
O'Neill & Whitaker, Inc.
1809 Baltimore Ave.
Kansas City, Mo. 64108

RE: Tile

Dear Mr O'Neill:

This is in reference to your letter dated May 18, 1989, requesting the tariff classification of a "marble" tile under the Harmonized Tariff Schedule of the United States Annotated (HTSUSA). A sample produced in Taiwan was submitted.

FACTS:

Information submitted by the importer states that the merchandise at issue is black 100 percent marble tile. However, laboratory analysis indicates that this product is not geological marble, it is geological limestone, a different calcareous stone. The tile measures twelve inches by twelve inches in facial area and three eights of an inch thick.

ISSUE:

Whether the tile at issue is classifiable as marble or other calcareous stone.

LAW AND ANALYSIS:

Subheading 6802.91, HTSUSA, provides for worked monumental or building stone, other, marble, travertine and alabaster. The importer states that the merchandise at issue is called marble by the trade, however, it is a highly polished limestone. Limestone
does not possess the degree of crystallinity required for genuine geological marble.

There are other stones that are classified under the HTSUSA, by the geological definition rather than the trade definition. Ecaussine is considered to be granite in the trade; however, it is not classified as granite under the HTSUSA. The Explanatory Notes constitute the official interpretation of the tariff at the international level. The Explanatory Notes to heading 2515, HTSUSA, state that this heading provides for marble, travertine, ecaussine and other calcarious monumental or building stone. The Explanatory Notes provide that on fracture ecaussine shows a granular surface similar to granite and is therefore sometimes known as "Belgian granite", "Flanders granite" or "petit granit". However, granite is provided for under heading 2516, HTSUSA.

The geological definition is used in determining the tariff classification of the merchandise at issue under the HTSUSA. Therefore, this merchandise cannot be classified as marble.

HOLDING:

The merchandise at issue is classifiable under 6802.92.00, HTSUSA, as worked monumental or building stone and articles thereof, other, other calcareous stone. The rate of duty is 6 percent ad valorem.

Sincerely,

John Durant, Director

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