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HQ 953171

February 26, 1993

CLA-2; CO:R:C:T 953171 ch


TARIFF NO.: 4202.92.9020

Barb Ruskamb
Charles M. Schayer & Co.
Customhouse Brokers
3839 Newport Street
Denver, CO 80207

RE: Classification of unfinished compact disc storage cases; 4202; similar to containers enumerated in 4202.

Dear Ms. Ruskamp:

This is in response to your letter of December 14, 1992, requesting tariff classification under the Harmonized Tariff Schedule of the United States Annotated (HTSUSA), for two styles of compact disc storage cases. Samples were provided to our office for examination and will be returned to you under separate cover.


The samples submitted are two compact disc cases, model numbers CDW-36 and CDW-72. Both models are composed of woven man-made textile fabric. The cases are folded in the center so as to create two inside sleeves. They feature zipper closures which encompass three sides of the cover. Model number CDW-36 measures approximately 11 3/8 inches by 6 inches, and model number CDW-72 measures approximately 11 1/4 inches by 11 3/8 inches. A textile label with the embroidered legend "Case Logic" is sewn on the exterior of each sample. Case Logic will place an insert, designed to organize compact discs, into these items after importation.


What is the proper classification of the subject merchandise under the HTSUSA?


Classification of goods under the HTSUSA is governed by the General Rules of Interpretation (GRI). GRI 1 provides that classification is determined first in accordance with the terms of the headings of the tariff and any relative section or chapter notes. Where goods cannot be classified on the basis of GRI 1, the remaining GRI will be applied in order.

Heading 4202, HTSUSA, provides for the following:

Trunks, suit-cases, vanity-cases, executive-cases, briefcases, school satchels, spectacle cases, binocular cases, camera cases, musical instrument cases, gun cases, holsters and similar containers; travelling- bags, toilet bags, rucksacks, handbags, shopping-bags, tobacco-pouches, tool bags, sports bags, bottle-cases, jewellery boxes, powder-boxes, cutlery cases and similar containers, of leather or of composition leather, of sheeting of plastics, of textile materials, of vulcanised fibre or of paperboard, or wholly or mainly covered with such materials or with paper.

Compact disc cases are not specifically described by the exemplars of this heading. However, a compact disc case will fall within the purview of heading 4202 if it is similar to a container in the first or second part of the heading.

The Explanatory Notes (EN) to the Harmonized Commodity Description and Coding System constitute the official interpretation of the nomenclature at the international level.

The EN to heading 4202 state in part that:

The expression "similar containers" in the first part includes hat boxes, camera accessory cases, cartridge pouches, sheaths for hunting or camping knives, etc.

The expression "similar containers" in this second part includes note-cases, writing-cases, pen-cases, ticket- cases, needle-cases, key-cases, pipe-cases, tool and jewellery rolls, shoe-cases, brush-cases, etc.

In Headquarters Ruling Letter (HRL) 951080, dated May 14, 1992, we concluded that cassette and compact disc carrying cases were similar to musical instrument and camera cases. Hence, these items were classified under heading 4202. Similarly, in HRL 952487, dated December 29, 1992, we found that a bi-fold style compact disc storage unit with a snap tab closure was similar to several items enumerated in heading 4202.

Moreover, in HRL 952700, issued to Case Logic on December 23, 1992, we found that several computer disc storage cases were classified under heading 4202. In that ruling, we concluded that the storage cases were similar to a number of the exemplars featured in heading 4202. Those items were substantially similar in appearance and design to the subject merchandise.

Accordingly, we conclude that the subject merchandise is classifiable under heading 4202.


The subject merchandise is classifiable under subheading 4202.92.9020, HTSUSA, which provides for, inter alia, trunks, suitcases, vanity cases, attache cases, briefcases, school satchels, spectacle cases, binocular cases, camera cases, musical instrument cases, gun cases, holsters and similar containers; other: with outer surface of plastic sheeting or of textile materials: other, other, other: of man-made fibers. The applicable rate of duty is 20 percent ad valorem. The textile quota category is 670.

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. Since part categories are the result of international bilateral agreements which are the subject of frequent negotiations 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 issuance of the U.S. Customs Service, which is updated weekly and is available at the local Customs office.

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


John Durant, Director

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