United States International Trade Commision Rulings And Harmonized Tariff Schedule
faqs.org  Rulings By Number  Rulings By Category  Tariff Numbers
faqs.org > Rulings and Tariffs Home > Rulings By Number > 1992 HQ Rulings > HQ 0556320 - HQ 0734154 > HQ 0734067

Previous Ruling Next Ruling

HQ 734067

September 3, 1991

MAR-2-05 CO:R:C:V 734067 GRV


Ms. Susan R. McCabe
Senior Entry Specialist
The Hipage Company, Inc.
227 E. Plume Street
Norfolk, Virginia 23510

RE: Country of origin marking of nylon gloves assembled abroad from material of U.S. origin. Textile products; 19 CFR 12.130; T.D. 90-17; C.S.D. 90-19; C.S.D. 90-20; 19 CFR 12.130(c); 19 CFR 10.22; C.S.D. 89-37; 733713; T.D. 75-222; 731061; 709325; quota; C.S.D. 85-26; C.S.D. 89-38(24); 134.24(d)(2); 732793; C.S.D. 89-89

Dear Ms. McCabe:

This is in response to your letter of February 20, 1991, on behalf of the John Plant Company, requesting a ruling on the country of origin marking requirements applicable to imported nylon gloves, assembled abroad from U.S. components and packaged with gloves wholly made in Sri Lanka. Unmarked samples of the merchandise as exported (unassembled) and imported (assembled) were submitted for examination. Although you do not request a ruling on the applicability of subheading 9802.00.80, Harmonized Tariff Schedule of the United States (HTSUS), to the nylon gloves, you inquire as to whether visa requirements are applic- able to imported merchandise entitled to this tariff treatment.


100% nylon tricot fabric of U.S. origin will be cut in the U.S. into glove "blanks," i.e., hand-shaped silhouettes. These glove "blanks" and other U.S. components (polyester or nylon thread, corrugated boxes, fiber identification and country of origin tags and packaging material which may consist of poly bags or cardboard inserts with rubber bands) will be exported to Sri Lanka to be sewn into nylon gloves. In Sri Lanka, two glove "blanks" will be sewn together and the glove will be turned inside out to make an inseam glove. Following the sewing operation, the completed gloves will be inspected, individually labeled with an adhesive paper tag, and packaged by the dozen pairs into corrugated cartons. You state that the packaging tape, plastic strappings, and carton shipping labels will not be of U.S. origin. The packaged gloves then will be imported into the U.S. in partial shipments along with gloves made wholly in Sri Lanka.
In a telephone conversation with a member of my staff on July 2, 1991, you stated that the merchandise will be classified under HTSUS subheading 6116.92.6030, which has a Textile Category System (TCS) number of 331. Further, you stated that the gloves are usually sold to industrial industries by the carton or in packages of a dozen.


How should the nylon gloves, assembled abroad from U.S. materials, be marked to indicate their country of origin.


The marking statute, 304 of the Tariff Act of 1930, as amended (19 U.S.C. 1304), provides that, unless excepted, every article of foreign origin (or its container) imported into the U.S. shall be marked in a conspicuous place as legibly, indelibly and permanently as the nature of the article (or its container) will permit in such manner as to indicate to the ultimate purchaser the English name of the country of origin of the article. Part 134, Customs Regulations (19 CFR Part 134), implements the country of origin marking requirements and exceptions of 19 U.S.C. 1304.

The primary purpose of the country of origin marking statute is to "mark the goods so that at the time of purchase the ultimate purchaser may, by knowing where the goods were produced, be able to buy or refuse to buy them, if such marking should influence his will." United States v. Friedlaender & Co., 27 CCPA 297, 302, C.A.D. 104 (1940).

For textiles and textile products subject to 204 of the Agricultural Act of 1956, as amended (7 U.S.C. 1854), the principles for determining the country of origin are provided at 12.130, Customs Regulations (19 CFR 12.130). In T.D. 90-17, we stated that these principles were applicable to such merchandise for all Customs purposes, including marking and the assessment of duties. See also, C.S.D.s 90-19 and 90-20. Where U.S. articles/ materials are sent abroad for assembly operations under the provisions of HTSUS Chapter 98, Subchapter II, 12.130(c), interpreting U.S. Note 2 of that Subchapter, provides, in part, that:

[i]n order to have a single definition of the term "product of" and, therefore, a single country of origin for a textile or textile product, ..., merchandise which falls within the purview of Chapter 98, Subchapter II, Note 2, [HTSUS], may not, upon its return to the U.S., be considered a product of the U.S.
However, certain foreign assembled articles, entitled to the duty exemption provided under HTSUS subheading 9802.00.80, can be marked in accordance with the provisions of 10.22, Customs Regulations (19 CFR 10.22). This regulation provides that if foreign-assembled articles are made entirely of American- made materials, then the U.S. origin of the material may be disclosed by using a legend such as "Assembled in from material of U.S. origin," or a similar phrase. See, C.S.D. 89-37 and Headquarters Ruling Letter (HRL) 733713 dated November 14, 1990. In T.D. 75-222, 9 Cust.Bull. 483, we stated that imported gloves must be legibly and conspicuously marked to indicate the country of origin by means of an ink stamp, or a label permanently sewn or glued near the hem or cuff of the glove in reasonable proximity to the size marking, and that easily removable adhesive labels were not acceptable. See, HRL 731061 dated July 28, 1988, and HRL 709325 dated July 31, 1978.

Applying the above considerations to the textile products here, the foreign-assembled nylon gloves will be products of Sri Lanka when imported into the U.S.; subject to all applicable visa and quota requirements pertaining to HTSUS subheading 6116.92.6030. See, C.S.D.s 85-26 and 89-38(24). Accordingly, these foreign assembled cotton work gloves must be marked to indicate their country of origin by means of a label permanently sewn or glued near the hem or cuff of the glove in reasonable proximity to the size marking.

However, an exception to this individual marking requirement might be applicable if the imported gloves meet the conditions specified at 134.32(d), Customs Regulations (19 CFR 134.32(d)). This regulation provides that articles for which the marking of the containers will reasonably indicate the origin of the articles may be excepted from marking requirements. The necessary predicate for this marking exception to be applicable is that Customs must be satisfied that the articles will reach the ultimate purchaser in the original, properly marked container in which the article was imported. In HRL 732793 dated December 29, 1989 (copy enclosed), Customs determined that string knit gloves for industrial use, sold to meat cutters, vegetable growers and packers and rice processors--the ultimate purchasers- -in cartons properly marked to indicate their country of origin to be distributed free of charge to their employees, were excepted from individual marking under this provision. See also, C.S.D. 89-89.

Because you have not provided sufficient information regarding the circumstances of the glove importations, we cannot determine if 134.32(d) or any other marking exception available under 134.32 is applicable to your merchandise. However, if after reviewing HRL 732793 you believe the nylon gloves qualify for an individual marking exception, please furnish us with the pertinent information and we will issue a ruling at that time. Regardless of whether imported merchandise is individually marked or not, if it is sold to ultimate purchasers in disposable containers which are not normally opened prior to purchase, then the containers also must be marked to indicate the country of origin of its contents. 19 CFR 134.24(d)(2).


Based on the information presented and given the fact that the merchandise samples submitted were unmarked, we cannot give you the country of origin marking ruling you request concerning the nylon gloves, except to state that the gloves must be marked to indicate their country of origin, which in this case is Sri Lanka. However, based on the information provided and assuming the transaction is entitled to the duty exemption available under HTSUS subheading 9802.00.80, a country of origin marking on the nylon gloves that states that the gloves were "Assembled in Sri Lanka from material of U.S. origin" may be used, provided the label is sufficiently conspicuous and permanent in accordance with T.D. 75-222. Accordingly, you are advised to check with the Customs officials at the Norfolk port to ensure that the manner of label you decide to employ meets the marking requirements of 19 U.S.C. 1304 and 19 CFR Part 134.


Previous Ruling Next Ruling

See also: