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HQ 086525

July 16, 1990

CLA-2 CO:R:C:G 086525 JLJ


TARIFF NO.: 5608.19.2000

District Director of Customs
Thomas P. O'Neill, Jr. Federal Building
10 Causeway Street
Boston, Massachusetts 02222-1059

RE: Decision on Application for Further Review of Protest No. 0401-9-000850/851

Dear Sir:

This protest was filed against your decision in the liquidation of certain entries covering bait bags imported from the People's Republic of China. A sample was submitted along with the protest.


The merchandise at issue consists of a polypropylene bait bag, approximately 14 inches in length and of knotted net construction. The bag has an opening at either end which can be closed by means of a drawstring. The bait bags are placed in lobster traps to hold bait which attracts lobsters into the traps.


In Customs Headquarters Ruling Letter (HRL) 083272 of January 10, 1990, we held that bait bags, similar to the goods in question, were classified in subheading 5608.19.2000, Harmonized Tariff Schedule of the United States Annotated (HTSUSA). This subheading provides for made up fishing nets and other made up nets, of textile materials: of man-made textile materials: other: other. The visa category for this subheading is 229. In HRL 086275 of March 13, 1990 and HRL 086342 of March 14, 1990, we again held that bait bags were classified in subheading 5608.19.2000, HTSUSA. - 2 -

The protestant claims that the bait bags should be classified under the provision for fish landing nets, butterfly nets and similar nets, subheading 9507.90.60, HTSUSA. He contends that the instant bait bags are not fishing nets but are in fact categorized as landing nets and were classified in a similar provision under the Tariff Schedules of the United States. He also maintains that the bait bags should not require a visa because they are not made domestically.

The HTSUSA replaced the Tariff Schedules of the United States (TSUS) as our statutory tariff schedule on January 1, 1989, pursuant to the enactment of the Omnibus Trade and Competitiveness Act of 1988, section 1204(c), 19 U.S.C.A. section 3004(c) (West Supp. 1989). Although implementation of the HTSUSA was intended to be, to the extent practicable, duty and quota neutral, some changes were unavoidable when converting from the TSUS to the HTSUSA. It appears that the instant merchandise is one of those articles in which implementation of the HTSUSA resulted in a change in the textile category designation.

The Explanatory Notes for Heading 9507, HTSUSA, state that:

This heading covers:

(2) Fish landing nets, butterfly nets and similar nets. These usually consist of pocket-like nets of textile yarn or cord, mounted on a wire support and fixed to a handle.

The exemplars are not similar to the instant bait bags, which are neither mounted on a wire support nor fixed to a handle. Moreover, it is our experience that landing nets do not have openings at both ends with drawstrings. Landing nets usually have larger dimensions and are used to scoop up fish after they have been hooked. The instant bait bags merely contain bait which lures lobsters into the traps. - 3 -

The Explanatory Notes for Heading 5608 state as follows:

Made up nets are nets, whether or not ready for use, made directly to shape or assembled from pieces of netting....The heading includes fishing nets,...net shopping bags and similar carrying nets....

In view of the bait bag's design, construction and use we find that it is analogous to the netting provided for in Heading 5608. We hereby reaffirm HRL 083272, HRL 086275 and HRL 086342.


The instant bait bags are classified as made up fishing nets, of textile materials, in subheading 5608.19.2000, HTSUSA.

The protest must be denied in full. A copy of this decision should be attached to the Form 19 Notice of Action to be sent to the protestant.


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