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HQ 950359

January 9, 1991

CLA-2 C0:R:C:T jlj


TARIFF NO.: 6302.60.0020; 6302.60.0030

Mr. Edward Baker
A. N. Deringer, Inc.
30 West Service Road
Champlain, New York 12919-9703

RE: Classification of cotton terry cloth hooded towel and washcloth

Dear Mr. Baker:

In your letter of September 9, 1991, you requested a tariff classification ruling under the Harmonized Tariff Schedule of the United States Annotated (HTSUSA) covering a "baby towel and washcloth" manufactured in Canada. You submitted samples of the merchandise along with your request.


The samples submitted are made of 100% cotton terry fabric. They are a child's hooded towel and a washcloth. The hooded towel measures approximately 30 inches by 35 inches. The washcloth measures approximately 9 1/2 inches by 9 1/2 inches. The edges of the towel and the washcloth are finished with a narrow strip of woven fabric.

One corner of the towel has a triangular piece forming a pocket. The inside of the pocket is of terry cloth fabric. The outside of the pocket is covered with a triangular piece of cotton woven printed fabric. This pocket is used as a hood to cover the child's head after a bath, while the rest of the towel is used to dry off or to cover the child.


What are the HTSUSA classifications of these items?


Classification of merchandise under the HTSUSA is in accordance with the General Rules of Interpretation (GRIs), taken in order. GRI 1 provides that classification shall be according to the terms of the headings and any relative section or chapter notes.

The instant merchandise is a towel and a washcloth packaged together for retail sale which are classifiable in the same heading, i.e., Heading 6302, which provides for bed linen, table linen and kitchen linen. The towel and wash cloth are provided for under the 10 digit level, i.e., "Towels: Other," in subheading 6302.60.0020, HTSUSA, and "Other," including all not specially provided for articles such as washclothes, in subheading 6302.60.0030, HRTSUSA.

The term "set put up for retail sale" is discussed in GRI 3(a), HTSUSA. GRI 3(a) provides that when two or more headings each refer to part only of the items in a set put up for retail sale, those headings are to be regarded as equally specific in relation to the goods.

GRI 6 provides that for legal purposes, the classification of goods in the subheadings of a heading shall be determined by the terms of those subheadings, by any related subheading notes and, mutatis mutandis, by GRI's 1 through 5, with the understanding that only subheadings at the same level are comparable. GRI 6 thus incorporates GRI 1 through GRI 5 in classifying goods at the subheading level. Inasmuch as GRI 6 uses the phrase "for legal purposes," the preceding GRI do not have any application beyond the eight digit level, because the ninth and tenth digit (i.e., the statistical suffix) are used for statistical purposes only.

It is Customs position that GRI 6 can apply at the ten digit level only where there is an existing question as to which statistical annotation applies and where no other rule will resolve the matter. GRI 6 would not apply in cases such as the instant goods where there are annotations providing for the reporting of the goods separately. See Customs Headquarters Ruling Letter (HRL) 087287 of August 9, 1990, and HRL 087397 of August 9, 1990.


In view of the rationale set forth above, the HTSUSA tariff provision applicable to the hooded towel is subheading 6302.60.0020, HTSUSA, which provides for toilet linen and kitchen linen, of terry toweling or similar terry fabrics, of cotton: towels: other, textile category 363, dutiable at the rate of 10.3 percent ad valorem.

The provision applicable to the washcloth is subheading 6302.60.0030, HTSUSA, which provides for toilet linen and kitchen linen, of terry toweling or similar terry fabrics, of cotton: other, textile category 369, dutiable at the rate of 10.3 percent ad valorem.

As products of Canada, the instant merchandise is eligible for a special rate of duty under the United States-Canada Free Trade Agreement (CFTA) if all requirements of the CFTA are met. For subheadings 6302.60.0020 and 6302.60.0030, the rate of duty is 7.2 percent ad valorem.

Due to the changeable nature of the statistical annotation (the ninth and tenth digits of the classification) and the restraint (quota/visa) categories applicable to textile merchandise, you should contact your local Customs office prior to importation of this merchandise to determine the current status of any import restraints or requirements.

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. Inasmuch as part categories are the result of international bilateral agreements which are subject to frequent renegotiations and changes, to obtain the most current information available, we suggest that you check, close to the time of shipment, the Status Report on Current Import Quotas (Restraint Levels), an internal issuance of the U. S. Customs Service, which is available for inspection at your local Customs office.


John Durant, Director
Commercial Rulings Division

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