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HQ 555769

December 20, 1990

CLA-2 CO:R:C 555769 RA


TARIFF NO.: 9801.00.20

Leslie Alan Glick, Esq.
Porter, Wright, Morris & Arthur
1233 20th Street, N.W.
Washington 20036-2395

RE: Reimportation under subheading 9801.00.20, HTSUS, of molds exported to Germany under a lease arrangement

Dear Mr. Glick:

This is in response to your letter of October 24, 1990, on behalf of UVEX Winter Optical Inc., of Smithfield, Rhode Island, regarding the free entry under subheading 9801.00.20, Harmonized Tariff Schedule of the United States (HTSUS), of molds which are reimported after having been exported to Germany pursuant to a lease arrangement. You also request that we confirm that the molds would not be considered "assists" and, thus, would not affect the appraisement of merchandise made from the molds. The appraisement issue will be subject of a separate response.


Your client imports molds from its parent company in Germany and pays the.applicable duty. The molds, which are used in the manufacture of glass products, may be sent back to the parent company pursuant to a lease agreement between the related parties. If the molds are subsequently reimported, the importer wishes to obtain duty-free treatment for the articles under the provisions of subheading 9801.00.20, HTSUS.


Will the reimported molds be entitled to duty-free treatment under subheading 9801.00.20, HTSUS?


Subheading 9801.00.20, HTSUS, provides for the duty-free treatment of:

[a]rticles, previously imported, with respect to which the duty was paid upon such previous importation ... if (1) reimported, without having
been advanced in value or improved in condition by any process of manufacture or other means while abroad,. after having been exported under lease or similar use agreements, and (2) reimported by or for the account of the person who imported it into, and exported it from, the United States.

You state that your client will reimport each mold after having paid duty on the first importation from Germany and will later send the mold back to Germany pursuant to the lease agreement. There would be no advancement in value or improvement in condition of the mold by any means while abroad.

On the basis of the stated facts, we are of the opinion that the reimported molds would be entitled to entry without the payment of duty under the provisions of subheading 9801.00.20, HTSUS.


Molds reimported after having been exported back to the country of origin may be accorded free entry under subheading 9801.00.20, HTSUS, provided they were duty paid on the first importation, not advanced in value or improved in condition while abroad, exported under a lease agreement, and reimported by the original importer.


John Durant, Director

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