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NY 867396

Oct 25, 1991

CLA-2-44:S:N:N1:230 867396


Ms. Loretta Kruse
Anthony Villanueva & Co., Inc.
9375 Customhouse Plaza, Suite J
Otay Mesa, CA 92173

RE: The country of origin marking of wooden shutters painted in Mexico

Dear Ms. Kruse:

In your letter dated September 19, 1991, you requested a ruling on the country of origin marking of American wooden shutters painted in Mexico. The request was made on behalf of your client, Ohline Corporation of Gardena, California.

The shutters are manufactured in the United States. They are exported to Mexico for the sole purpose of painting. Photographs submitted by you show that the shutters are completely formed and assembled when exported. In Mexico, the shutters are surface finished by applying a barrier coat, a primer coat and a top coat and by sanding. The finished painted shutters are then reimported into the United States where hardware is attached and where they are packaged for shipping to the ultimate purchaser.

Part 134, Customs Regulations (19 C.F.R. 134), sets forth the country of origin marking requirements. Section 134.1(b), C.R., defines country of origin as the country of manufacture, production or growth of any article of foreign origin entering the U.S. Further work or material added to an article in another country must effect a substantial transformation in order to render the other country as the country of origin.

The shutters are completely manufactured when exported from the United States. They are only surface finished by painting in Mexico. Such a finishing operation does not constitute a substantial transformation. A new and different article, having a different distinctive name, character or use is not formed by the painting.

Accordingly, the country of origin for the wooden shutters which are reimported after having been painted in Mexico remains as the United States. As products of the United States, they may be excepted from being marked under the provisions of Section 134.32(m), C.R.

This ruling is being issued under the provisions of Section 177 of the Customs Regulations (19 C.F.R. 177).

A copy of this ruling letter should be attached to the entry documents filed at the time this merchandise is imported. If the documents have been filed without a copy, this ruling should be brought to the attention of the Customs officer handling the transaction.


Jean F. Maguire

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