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NY 801049

August 22, 1994

MAR-2-05:S:N:N3:115 801049


Mr. Arlen T. Epstein
Serko & Simon
One World Trade Center
Suite 3371
New York, NY 10048

RE: The country of origin marking requirements for key chains from China.

Dear Mr. Epstein:

In your letter dated June 1, 1994, you requested a ruling on the country of origin marking requirements for key chains with a miniature imitation sneaker attached, on behalf of your client, RGA Accessories, NY, NY. Both components are made in China. Your submitted sample will be returned to you as requested.

The sneaker is made of plastic and measures approximately 4 inches in length by 1 and 1 1/2 inches in width and 2 and 1/4 inches in height. On either side of the sneaker is an oval printed logo that reads "Made in U.S.A." At the bottom of the logo is the name "Lex Luger." On the base of the back of the sneaker, is the registered blue insignia of the World Wrestling Federation. A hang tag designating the country of origin as China will be attached by a plastic tie to one of the steel key rings which is attached to the sneaker. The bottom of the sneaker has raised letters indicating "Made in China."

You have cited the regulations --- noting in Part 134 of the Customs Regulations as to implementation and exceptions. As provided for in section 134.41 of the Customs Regulations, the country of origin marking is considered to be conspicuous if the ultimate purchaser in the United States is able to find the marking easily and read without strain. You further cite section 134.47 of the Customs Regulations which states when as part of a trademark or trade name or as part of a souvenir marking, the name of a location in the U.S. or "U.S." or "America" appear, the article shall be legibly, conspicuously, and permanently marked to indicate the name of the country of origin of the article preceded by "Made in," "Product of," or other similar words, in close proximity or in some other conspicuous location.

You claim that the "Made in U.S.A. - Lex Luger" logo is a trademark within the exception of 19CFR134.47 and that the key chain is legibly, conspicuously and permanently marked to indicate the name of the country of origin of the article preceded by the words "Made in China."

However, noting 19 CFR 134.44(c) of the Customs Regulations which indicates that when tags are used, they must be attached in a conspicuous place and in a manner which assures that unless deliberately removed they will remain on the article until it reaches the ultimate purchaser. Accordingly, tags may be used to indicate the country of origin of the sneakers if the requirements of 19 CFR 134.44(c) are met.

This office is of the opinion that the hang tag is properly marked to indicate the trademark of Titan Sports Inc., as well as the distributor RGA Accessories along with the c/o designation "Made in China." However, the hang tag is affixed to the key chain and is not connected to the sneaker. Upon close examination of the key chain and the sneaker, there appears to be a nebulous situation at best pertaining to their country of origin(s). The key chain appears to be made in China, while the sneaker appears to the buyer to be made in the United States due to the configuration of the logo. Upon observing the bottom of the sneaker, the raised lettering "Made in China" are clear and distinguishable.

This office is of the opinion that the key chain/sneaker with the hang tag as presented does not satisfy the marking requirements of Section 304. For the marking to be acceptable, the hang tag affixed to the lace of the sneaker or through an eyelet of the sneaker itself would be required.

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
Area Director

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