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HQ 085966

March 2, 1990

CLA-2 CO:R:C:G 085966 HP


TARIFF NO.: 6211.32.0070

Ms. Doreen Wai
Second Secretary
Hong Kong Economic & Trade Affairs
Hong Kong Economic and Trade Office
British Embassy
1233 20th Street, N.W., Suite 504
Washington, DC 20036

RE: Non-padded fishing vests are other garments. hunting; weather; windbreaker; outerwear

Dear Ms. Wai:

This is in reply to your letter of November 9, 1989, concern ing the tariff classification of men's fishing vests, produced in Hong Kong, under the Harmonized Tariff Schedule of the United States Annotated (HTSUSA). Please reference your case number 62/89, Standard Sales, Inc.


The merchandise at issue consists of an un-padded fishing vest, constructed of 60% cotton/40% polyester woven fabric (although the sample is labeled "100% COTTON). The vest is sleeveless, has a V-neck, full front opening with a heavy-duty zipper closure, oversized armholes, various hooks, snaps, and patch pockets, located throughout the garment, closed by either zippers or a Velcro-like substance, and reinforced hems and armholes. You state that the garment is constructed of water-repellant fabrics.


Whether the fishing vest is considered anti-weather outer wear under the HTSUSA?

Heading 6201, HTSUSA, provides for, inter alia, windbreakers and similar articles (including padded, sleeveless jackets). The Explanatory Notes (EN) to the HTSUSA constitute the official interpretation of the tariff at the international level. The EN to heading 6101, which by reference provides for heading 6201, states that this heading covers garments "characterized by the fact that they are generally worn over all other clothing for protection against the weather."

We feel that this excerpt does not adequately describe the instant merchandise. The garment has no padding, and is worn primarily for the pockets' utilitarian functions. Therefore, the vest is not classifiable in heading 6201.

Subheading 6211.32.0070, HTSUSA, provides for, inter alia, vests. The EN to heading 6114, which by reference provides for heading 6211, states that this heading covers "(5)Special articles of apparel used for certain sports...." It is our opinion that classification under this heading is more appropriate than under heading 6201 (see HRL 085301 of October 19, 1989 (hunting vests)), and decree it as such.


As a result of the foregoing, the instant merchandise is classified under subheading 6211.32.0070, HTSUSA, textile category
359, as track suits, ski-suits and swimwear; other garments, other garments, men's or boys', of cotton, vests. The applicable rate of duty is 8.6 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 negotiations and changes, to obtain the most current information available, we suggest that the importer 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 the 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, the importer should contact the local Customs office prior to importing the merchandise to determine the current status of any import restraints or require ments.


John Durant, Director
Commercial Rulings Division

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