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HQ 089546

August 23, 1991

CLA-2 CO:R:C:T 089546 PR


TARIFF NO.: 6201.93.3520; 6203.43.4020

Ms, Silvia Perez
M.G. Maher & Co.
442 Canal Street
New Orleans, LA. 70130

RE: Classification of Boys' Athletic-Style Garments--Are They Track Suits?

Dear Ms. Perez:

This is in reply to your letter of May 10, 1991, on behalf of Stevens Sportwear Co., Inc., concerning the classification of two garments you describe as a jogging set and which will be produced in Bangladesh, Morocco, and Sri Lanka. Our ruling on the matter follows.


The submitted sample consists of two garments, a jacket (style N7J401) and trousers (style N7J101). The waist-length jacket, made of blue and black fabrics, has a woven nylon outer shell and a 65/35 polyester/cotton knit lining, a pointed collar, a partial zippered opening at the neckline, two slanted welt pockets slightly above the elasticized waistband, and long sleeves with elasticized sleeve ends. The unlined black trousers have a woven nylon outer shell, an elasticized waistband with a drawstring, and elasticized leg bottoms. They will be imported in boys' sizes 8-20 and packaged together for retail sale.


The issue presented by the instant samples is whether they are classifiable under the provisions for track suits, or whether they are classifiable individually as separates.


Imported goods are classifiable according to the General Rules of Interpretation (GRI's) of the Harmonized Tariff Schedule of the United States (HTSUSA). In this instance, GRI 1 governs the classification of the merchandise. GRI 1 provides that for legal purposes, classification shall be determined according to the terms of the headings in the tariff and according to any pertinent section or chapter notes.

Note 13, Section XI, HTSUSA, provides that unless "the context otherwise requires, textile garments of different headings are to be classified in their own headings even if put up in sets for retail sale." Accordingly, in the absence of a provision requiring that the instant garments be classified as a set, they must be classified as separates.

To be classifiable as a unit at the heading (but not necessarily at the subheading) level, the garments must be considered to be either an ensemble or a track suit. Ensembles are required by Note 3(b), Chapter 62, HTSUSA, to consist of components of the same fabric construction, style, color and composition. The two garments do not have the same colors, so they do not qualify as ensembles.

Heading 6211 provides for "track suits." The Harmonized Commodity Description and Coding System, Explanatory Notes, which are the official interpretation of the HTSUSA at the international level (for the 4 digit headings and the 6 digit subheadings) state that track suits consist of two garments, one for the upper body and a pair of trousers, which, "because of their general appearance and the nature of the fabric, are clearly meant to be worn exclusively or mainly in the pursuit of sporting activities." (at page 841)

In Customs Headquarters Letter Ruling (HRL) 088569, dated May 31, 1991, it was held that only garments which are commonly and commercially known as "track suits" are classifiable as "track suits." These are garments which are usually associated in some manner with running or jogging.

In this instance, although Customs has previously ruled that woven track suits may have linings, HRL 087511, dated January 14, 1991, HRL 087966, dated January 30, 1991, we do not believe that the instant merchandise is classifiable as track suits. We note that due to fashion changes, many all purpose and leisure-type garments are styled to resemble warm-up and track suits. These garments can be seen being worn in grocery stores, on play grounds, etc., and are virtually indistinguishable in appearance from real warm-up and track suits. Since track suits must be worn exclusively or mainly for sporting activities (related to running and jogging), garments which are not intended for those type activities will most likely be worn for leisure and other nonrunning and nonjogging activities and only occasionally worn for activities related to running or jogging. Accordingly, when sets of garments are stated to be track suits, but appear to Customs to be leisure or multipurpose garments, evidence should be presented to the Customs classifying officer sufficient to establish the fact that the merchandise in question is intended to be worn during running or jogging, or related activities. In the absence of such evidence, Customs may classify such garments under provisions other than those which provide for track suits.


In regard to the sample garments, we have no evidence that they are intended for use during running, jogging, or related activities. They appear to be garments that can and would be worn for nonsporting activities. Therefore, the garments are not classifiable as track suits and must be classified separately.

The jacket is classifiable under the provision for anoraks, windbreakers, and similar garments, of man-made fibers, in subheading 6201.93.3520, HTSUSA, with duty at the rate of 29.5 percent ad valorem The trousers are classifiable under the provision for other trousers of synthetic fibers, in subheading 6203.43.4020, HTSUSA, with duty at the rate of 29.7 percent ad valorem. The designated textile and apparel category applicable to the jacket is 634 and the category applicable to the trousers is 647.

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

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 subject to frequent renegotiations 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 internal issuance of the U.S. Customs Service, which is available for inspection at your local Customs office.


John Durant, Director

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