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HQ 556263

January 9, 1992

CLA-2 CO:R:C:S 556263 RA


TARIFF NO.: 9811.00.60

Mr. Mark Juarez
Corinth Street 48
O-Berlin 1017, Germany

RE: Eligibility for duty-free entry of sample wooden articles from Germany

Dear Mr. Juarez:

This is in response to your letter of August 27, 1991, regarding the tariff status of "small wooden toys for grown-ups," designed to "reduce tension or stress," which will be imported as samples for distribution to potential manufacturers, distributors and customers.


You state that the articles are valued at approximately $5 each and that 150 to 325 units will be imported for distribution to retail outlets, manufacturers, and people in the industry and media. The purpose of this distribution is to locate potential U.S. manufacturers of the product, introduce it to potential distributors, and develop interest in it.


Whether the articles are entitled to free entry as samples for soliciting orders for foreign merchandise under subheading 9811.00.60, Harmonized Tariff Schedule of the United States (HTSUS).


Subheading 9811.00.60, HTSUS, provides for the duty-free treatment of any sample either valued at less than $1 each or marked, torn, perforated, or otherwise treated so that it is unsuitable for use otherwise than as a sample to be used in the U.S. only for soliciting orders for products of foreign countries.

Inasmuch as the wooden articles in this case are valued at more than $1 each, they may not be entered free of duty under this tariff provision unless they are marked as samples or treated in some way to render them unsuitable for commercial sale or any use other than as samples for obtaining orders for similar articles. Moreover, because subheading 9811.00.60, HTSUS, applies only to samples to be used to solicit orders for foreign merchandise, if the wooden toys are imported for the purpose of locating potential U.S. manufacturers of the product, the samples would be ineligible for free entry under this provision.

In the absence of a photograph, sample, or complete description of the wooden toys, we are unable to provide you with a definitive ruling on the tariff classification and duty rate applicable to the product. However, we are enclosing copies of the provisions of the HTSUS covering toys and wooden articles which set forth the rates of duty applicable to various items. The rates of duty appearing in the "General" subcolumn of column 1 are applicable to products of Germany. We are also enclosing a copy of a booklet entitled "Importing into the United States" which should answer any questions you may have concerning the procedures for importing merchandise into this country.


Wooden toy samples to be imported for distribution to potential manufacturers, distributors and others in the industry would not be entitled to free entry under subheading 9811.00.60, HTSUS, unless they are used to solicit orders for foreign merchandise and they are marked or treated to render them unsuitable for sale or use other than as samples.


John Durant, Director
Commercial Rulings Division

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