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HQ 556239

October 11, 1991

CLA-2 CO:R:C:S 556239 WAW


Anthony T. Docal
Docal Associates, Inc.
Woodbridge Professional Center South
264 Amity Road
Suite 208
Woodbridge, CT 06525

RE: Eligibility of industrial waterproof footwear for duty-free treatment under the GSP; boots

Dear Mr. Docal:

This is in response to your letter dated August 27, 1991, concerning the eligibility of two types of industrial waterproof footwear from Mexico for duty-free treatment under the Generalized System of Preferences (GSP) (19 U.S.C. 2461-2466). Although samples of the merchandise were not submitted for our review, a product brochure relating to the dipped neoprene boot was included.


You state that you intend to import two types of waterproof boots from Mexico. The first boot is described as a polyvinyl chloride (PVC) injection molded boot. The PVC pellets, color pigments, steel toecaps, nylon liner and all other raw materials which are used to manufacture the boot in Mexico will be of U.S. origin. In Mexico, the boot will be produced using conventional injection molding technology.

The second type of boot which you intend to import is described as a dipped neoprene rubber boot. You state that all of the raw materials used to produce this boot which include raw or uncured rubber, pigments, liquid neoprene rubber latex, fabric (cotton or a synthetic material) to cut into the boot liner, steel toecaps, etc., will also be entirely of U.S. origin.


Whether the two types of industrial waterproof footwear are entitled to duty-free treatment under the GSP.


Under the GSP, eligible articles the growth, product or manufacture of a designated beneficiary developing country (BDC) which are imported directly into the customs territory of the U.S. from a BDC may receive duty-free treatment if the sum of (1) the cost or value of materials produced in the BDC, plus (2) the direct costs of the processing operations performed in the BDC, is equivalent to at least 35% of the appraised value of the article at the time of entry. See 19 U.S.C. 2463(b).

Mexico is a BDC. See General Note 3(c)(ii)(A), Harmonized Tariff Schedule of the United States Annotated (HTSUSA). If the Special Subcolumn opposite the HTSUSA classification of an article contains a letter "A" or "A*", this indicates that the article is an "eligible" article for purposes of the GSP.

Based upon your description of the merchandise and the product brochure you submitted, the waterproof footwear is properly classified under subheading 6401.10.00, HTSUSA, which provides for waterproof footwear with outer soles and uppers of rubber or plastics, the uppers of which are neither fixed to the sole nor assembled by stitching, riveting, nailing, screwing, plugging or similar processes: Footwear incorporating a protective metal toe-cap, dutiable at the rate of 37.5% ad valorem. The Special Subcolumn opposite this tariff provision does not contain an "A" or "A*". Therefore, the two types of waterproof footwear which are classified under this provision are not eligible for duty-free treatment under the GSP. Moreover, footwear has been designated as one of the import-sensitive articles which are ineligible for GSP treatment. See 19 U.S.C. 2463(c)(1)(E). There are no other special tariff preference programs which would be applicable to such footwear from Mexico.


As the two types of industrial waterproof footwear are ineligible articles under the GSP, they will not be entitled to duty-free treatment, but will be dutiable on their full value upon entry into the U.S.


John Durant, Director

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