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HQ 111004

July 26, 1990

VES-13-18-CO:R:P:C 111004 GV


Chief, Technical Branch
Pacific Region
One World Trade Center
Long Beach, California 90831

RE: Vessel Repair; Protest No. 32019-000144; CAPE HORN

Dear Sir:

Your memorandum dated January 29, 1990, forwarded a protest regarding vessel repair entry no. H19-0010403-5. Our findings are set forth below.


The CAPE HORN is a U.S.-flag vessel owned by the Department of Transportation/U.S. Maritime Administration. While engaging in the military exercise "Cobra Gold" the subject vessel had repairs performed at Sattahip, Thailand, and Subic Bay, R.P., in May, June and July, 1989. Subsequent to the completion of the aforementioned work, the subject vessel arrived in the United States at Honolulu, Hawaii, on July 14, 1989.

A vessel repair entry covering the work in question was filed on the date of arrival. The protestant elected not to file an application for relief. The entry was liquidated on November 24, 1989. A timely protest was filed on December 26, 1989. The protestant contends that since the vessel is owned by the U.S. Government and was engaged in the performance of government business at the time of the repairs, it is exempt from the payment of vessel repair duties. In support of this claim the protestant has submitted shipyard invoices and a U.S. Coast Guard Certificate of Ownership of Vessel.

It should be noted that upon contacting the U.S. Coast Guard, we have ascertained that the subject vessel is documented with a registry endorsement.


Whether the foreign work for which the protestant seeks relief is dutiable under 19 U.S.C. 1466.


Title 19, United States Code, section 1466, provides in pertinent part for payment of duty in the amount of 50 percent ad valorem on the costs of foreign repairs to vessels documented under the laws of the United States to engage in the foreign or coastwise trade, or vessels intended to engage in such trade.

Section 4.14(a)(2)(ii), Customs Regulations (19 CFR 4.14(a)(2)(ii)), promulgated pursuant to 19 U.S.C. 1466) provides that "Vessels owned or chartered by the United States Government, if documented with a registry, coastwise trade, or Great Lakes trade endorsement, or if undocumented, intended to engage in foreign, coastwise or Great Lakes trade, are subject to this section."

Accordingly, in view of the fact that the CAPE HORN is documented with a registry endorsement, the repairs under consideration are dutiable notwithstanding the vessel's ownership by the Department of Transportation/U.S. Maritime Administration.


The foreign work for which the protestant seeks relief is dutiable under 19 U.S.C. 1466.

Accordingly, the protest is denied.


B. James Fritz

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