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HQ 951746

April 7, 1994

CLA-2 CO:R:C:T 951746 HP


TARIFF NO.: 5608.11.0010

Ms. Evelyn C. Pooley, Attorney-in-Fact
Joanne M. Olsen Customs Broker
2601 Elliott Avenue, Suite 4117
Seattle, WA 98121

RE: Hand cast nets are considered made up fishing nets, as opposed to similar to sports nets. Pier I Imports; principle use; fish landing nets

Dear Ms. Pooley:

This is in reply to your letter of April 10, 1992. That letter concerned the tariff classification, under the Harmonized Tariff Schedule of the United States Annotated (HTSUSA), of hand cast net, produced in Thailand. Please reference your client The Danielson Company, IRS #91-0877232.


The merchandise at issue consists of a hand cast, string drawn (made of braided line) knotted nylon monofilament cast net. The sample submitted has a four foot radius and is designated as Style #CNM4. This represents a group of eight different sizes of monofilament nets that range in size from CNM3 to CNM8 (a three foot to a eight foot radius). All nets have a " mesh and are weighted, using one pound of weight per foot of net. The furnished page from your client's catalog also lists a series of knotted multi-filament nylon cast nets. They range in size from a three to a six foot radius and are designated by the prefix CNN. They also have a " mesh and a pound of weight per foot.


Whether the cast nets are considered similar to fish landing nets and butterfly nets, or to fishing nets, under the HTSUSA? LAW AND ANALYSIS:

Heading 5608, HTSUSA, provides for, inter alia, made up fishing nets and other made up nets, of textile materials. The Explanatory Notes (EN) to the Harmonized Commodity Description and Coding System (Harmonized System) constitute the official interpretation of the scope and content of the tariff at the international level. They represent the considered views of classification experts of the Harmonized System Committee. Totes, Inc. v. United States, No. 91-09-00714, slip op. 92-153, 14 Int'l Trade Rep. (BNA) 1916, 1992 Ct. Intl. Trade LEXIS 158 (Ct. Int'l Trade 1992). While not treated as dispositive, the EN are to be given considerable weight in Customs' interpretation of the HTSUSA. Boast, Inc. v. United States, 15 Int'l Trade Rep. (BNA) 1188, 1993 Ct. Intl. Trade LEXIS 19 (Ct. Int'l Trade 1993). It has therefore been the practice of the Customs Service to follow, whenever possible, the terms of the Explanatory Notes when interpreting the HTSUSA. The EN to this heading provides:

(2) Made up fishing nets and other made up nets, of textile materials.

Made up nets are nets, whether or not ready for use, made directly to shape or assembled from pieces of netting. The presence of handles, rings, weights, floats, cords or other accessories does not affect the classification of the goods of this group.

Made up nets of this heading are restricted to those nets not covered more specifically by other headings of the Nomencla- ture. The heading includes fishing nets....

The heading does not cover:

(c) Sports nets (e.g., goal nets and tennis nets), fish landing nets and other nets of Chapter 95.

Heading 9507, HTSUSA, provides for, inter alia, fish landing nets, butterfly nets and similar nets. The EN to this heading describes these nets as "usually consist[ing] of pocket-like nets of textile yarn or cord, mounted on a wire support and fixed to a handle." Therefore, if we consider the crab nets to be similar to the fish landing nets, classification in heading 9507 would be mandated. In HRL 087173 of September 18, 1990, we held that hand-cast string drawn fishing nets used to catch bait were excluded from heading 5608, HTSUSA, and were properly classified in heading 9507, HTSUSA. In HRL 951480 of March 28, 1994, however, we revoked HRL 087173, and found that cast nets are not similar to sports nets or fish landing nets. Accordingly, classification of the cast nets in heading 5608, HTSUSA, would be correct.


As a result of the foregoing, the instant merchandise is classified under subheading 5608.11.0010, HTSUSA, as knotted netting of twine, cordage or rope; made up fishing nets and other made up nets, of textile materials, of man-made textile materials, made up fishing nets, hand-cast string-drawn. The applicable rate of duty is 17 percent ad valorem.

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.


John Durant, Director
Commercial Rulings Division

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