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HQ 555309

June 6, 1989

CLA-2-CO:R:C 555309 RA


TARIFF NO.: 9811.00.60, HTSUS

Harvey A. Isaacs, Esq.
Siegel, Mandel & Davidson, P.C.
One Whitehall Street
New York, New York 10004

RE: Free entry of textile samples used to solicit foreign orders

Dear Sir:

This ruling is in response to your letter of February 23, 1989, regarding the eligibility under subheading 9811.00.60, Harmonized Tariff Schedule of the United States (HTSUS), of certain fabric samples your client Manuel Canovas, Inc., contemplates importing from France for use in soliciting orders for foreign merchandise.


The first sample is a piece of Chintz fabric with a printed design about 1 1/2 yards in length and about 1 yard in width. The second sample is a piece of rayon fabric in a checkerboard pattern about 1 yard in width and 1 1/2 yards in length, with seven 8 1/2 inch by 9 1/2 inch swatches of identical fabric sewn to the larger piece to indicate the range of available colors. The samples are valued in excess of $100 per yard and will be imported solely for soliciting foreign orders of similar fabric. The chintz piece represents one full repeat of the fabric pattern which is the minimum size usable as a sample as it permits viewing of the entire pattern. The piece of rayon fabric with several swatches sewn to it, which serve as an adjunct to the larger piece, allows a showing of the entire sweep and visual effect of the fabric pattern. The fabric pieces will be imported from a country to which quota and visa requirements do not apply.


Are the fabric pieces classifiable under the free provision in subheading 9811.00.60, HTSUS, for samples used to solicit foreign orders of the merchandise? Must they be treated in conformity with the guidelines set forth in our telex of February 11, 1987?


In order for pieces of fabric to be free of duty under subheading 9811.00.60, HTSUS, they must be valued at less than $1 or treated to render them commercially unsuitable for any use other than as samples for taking orders for foreign-made fabric. In addition, the treatment administered should conform to the guidelines set forth in our telex dated February 11, 1987. As you know, these guidelines provide that in case of textile fabrics not over two yards in length, the fabric must be marked or perforated with the word "sample" at least one inch in height and not less than five inches in length on the face or front of the fabric in contrasting color. In the case of fabric swatches a hole one inch in diameter must be cut in the main body of the fabric or the swatch should be marked with the word "sample" in indelible ink or paint in a contrasting color and at least one inch in height and two inches in length.

Conformity with the prescribed guidelines is considered a prerequisite to eligibility for free entry as samples treated to render them usable only for taking foreign merchandise orders. The fact that the samples are imported from a country to which textile quota and visa requirements do not apply is not considered to be sufficient ground for waiving the requirements specified in the guidelines.


In order to be accorded free entry under the provisions of subheading 9811.00.60, HTSUS, samples valued over one dollar to be used for taking orders for foreign products must be treated by marking or cutting in accordance with the guidelines set forth in our telex of February 11, 1987.


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