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HQ 085382

August 31, 1989

CLA-2 CO:R:C:G 085382 HP


TARIFF NO.: 5903.90.3000

Ms. Ann M. Williams
A.N. Deringer, Inc.
30 West Service Road
Champlain, NY 12919-9703

RE: Plain woven wool/nylon upholstery fabric coated with a polyakyl acrylate plastic has a change in surface character visible to the naked eye.

Dear Ms. Williams:

This is in reply to your letter of July 26, 1989, concerning the tariff classification of coated fabric, produced in Canada, under the Harmonized Tariff Schedule of the United
States Annotated (HTSUSA). Please reference your client Trenton Textile Mills Ltd.


The merchandise at issue consists of a plain woven upholstery fabric consisting of a blend of 90 percent wool and 10 percent nylon, with a count of 6 ends and 5.5 picks per centimeter. The weight of the base material before coating is 454 g/m2, and the fabric will be imported in rolls 137 centimeters wide. The material has been finished with what we have determined to be a polyakyl acrylate plastic.


Whether the fabric is considered coated with plastics under the HTSUSA?


Heading 5903, HTSUSA, provides for classification of textile fabrics impregnated, coated, covered or laminated with plastics, other than tire cord covered by Heading

Note 2 of Chapter 59, HTSUSA, provides, in pertinent part:

Heading No. 59.03 applies to:

(a) Textile fabrics, impregnated, coated, covered or laminated with plastics, ... other than:
(1) Fabrics in which the impregnation, coating or covering cannot be seen with the naked eye (usually Chapters 50 to 55, 58 or 60); for the purpose of this provision, no account should be taken of any resulting change of

The wording of Note 2(a)(1) ("cannot be seen with the naked eye") is a clear expres sion by the drafters of the Harmonized System that a significant, if not substantial, amount of material must be added to a fabric for it to be considered "impregnated, coated, covered or laminated. The plastics material added to the fabric must be visibly distinguishable from that fabric without the use of magnification . Any change in the
"feel" of the material is not taken into account. In essence, the plastics coating must alter the visual characteristic of the fabric in order for the fabric to be considered coated with plastics.

Applying the statutory test to the submitted samples, using normally corrected vision in a well lighted room, the instant merchandise is coated with a plastics application visible to the naked eye. The surface character of the non- coated side is clearly of a plain weave fabric, slightly fibrous due to the wool. While the coated side of the fabric remains fuzzy, the weaving pattern of warp over weft is no longer visible. It is our opinion that this disappearance is a result of the matting down of the fibrous yarns of the wool, making the coated side appear quite different than the non-coated side.


As a result of the foregoing, the instant merchandise is classified under subheading
5903.90.3000, HTSUSA, as textile fabrics impregnated, coated, covered or laminated with plastics, other than those of heading 5902, other, other. Articles which meet the definition of "goods originating in the territory of Canada" (see General Note
3(c)(vii)(B), HTSUSA) are subject to reduced rates of duty under the United States-
Canada Free Trade Agreement Implementation Act of 1988. If the merchandise con stitutes "goods originating in the territory of Canada," the applicable rate of duty is 4.7 percent ad valorem. Otherwise, the rate of duty is 5.3 percent ad valorem.

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 issuance of the U.S. Customs Service, which is updated weekly and is available at your local Customs office.


John Durant, Director
Commercial Rulings Division

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