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HQ 957847

May 25, 1995

CLA CO:R:C:T 957847 jb


Justin Cho
Benjamin B. Park dba B & H Customs Services Co. 150-40 183rd Street, Suite 224
Jamaica, N.Y. 11413

RE: Country of Origin and classification determination for infant's coverall; 19 CFR 12.130(b),(d),(e); cutting constitutes substantial transformation

Dear Mr. Cho:

This letter is in response to your inquiry, on behalf of your client, Babyra USA Inc., requesting a country of origin and classification determination for an infant's coverall. A sample was submitted to this office for examination.


The submitted sample consists of an infant's finely knit cotton coverall featuring long sleeves, a front snap opening which extends from the neck and down both pant legs, elasticized fabric at the leg openings, and a hood with fabric tie closures. The snap closures below the waist can be manipulated so that the lower garment body converts into a sack with an elasticized bottom. The article is a size 0-6 months.

The manufacturing process is as follows:

material is produced assembly by sewing material is cut to shape packing


What is the country of origin and proper classification of the merchandise at issue?


Country of Origin

Section 12.130 of the Customs Regulations (19 CFR 12.130) sets forth the principles of country of origin for textiles and textile products subject to Section 204 of the Agricultural Act of 1956, as amended (7 U.S.C. 1854).

Pursuant to 19 CFR 12.130(b), the standard of substantial transformation governs the country of origin determination where textiles and textile products are processed in more than one country. The country of origin of textile products is deemed to be that foreign territory or country where the article last underwent a substantial transformation. Substantial transformation is said to occur when the article has been transformed into a new and different article of commerce by means of substantial manufacturing or processing.

The factors to be applied in determining whether or not a manufacturing operation is substantial are set forth in 19 CFR 12.130(d)(2). The following are considered:

(i) The physical change in the material or article;

(ii) The time involved in the manufacturing or processing;

(iii) The complexity of the manufacturing or processing;

(iv) The level or degree of skill and/or technology required in the manufacturing or processing operations;

(v) The value added to the article or material;

Section 12.130(e)(1) describes manufacturing or processing operations from which an article will usually be considered a product of the country in which those operations occurred:

(i) Dyeing of fabric and printing when accompanied by two or more of the following finishing operations: bleaching, shrinking, fulling, napping, decating, permanent stiffening, weighting, permanent embossing, or moireing;

(ii) Spinning fibers into yarn;

(iii) Weaving, knitting or otherwise forming fabric;

(iv) Cutting of fabric into parts and the assembly of those parts into the completed article; or

(v) Substantial assembly by sewing and/or tailoring of all cut pieces of apparel articles which have been cut from fabric in another foreign territory or country, or insular possession, into a completed garment (e.g., the complete assembly of all cut pieces of suit-type jackets, suits and shirts).

We have previously held that cutting of fabric into pattern pieces constitutes a substantial transformation of the fabric, resulting in the apparel pieces becoming a product of the country where the fabric is cut (See Headquarters Ruling Letter (HRL) 952531, dated November 25, 1992; HRL 953697, dated July 26, 1993; and HRL 955125, dated January 27, 1994).

As was stated by Customs in Treasury Decision (T.D.) 85-38 (19 Cust. Bull. 58, 70; 50 FR 8714), the final document rule establishing 19 CFR 12.130, in pertinent part:

[T]he assembly of all cut pieces of a garment usually is a substantial manufacturing process that results in an article with a different name, character or use than the cut pieces. It should be noted that not all assembly operations of cut garment pieces will amount to a substantial transformation of those pieces. Where either less than complete assembly of all the cut pieces of a garment is performed in one country, or the assembly is a relatively simple one, then Customs will rule on the particular factual situations as they arise, utilizing the criteria in section 12.130(d).

It is our opinion that the sewing operation performed in China is a simple assembly operation. The sewing does not involve the complexity contemplated by Section 12.130(e)(1)(v), as for example, that found in the assembly and tailoring of all cut pieces of suit-type jackets, suits and shirts. Accordingly, country of origin is conferred in Korea, at the time of cutting.


Classification of merchandise under the Harmonized Tariff Schedule of the United States Annotated (HTSUSA) is in accordance with the General Rules of Interpretation (GRI). GRI 1 requires that classification be determined according to the terms of the headings and any relative section or chapter notes. Where goods cannot be classified solely on the basis of GRI 1, the remaining GRI will be applied, in the order of their appearance.

Chapter 61, HTSUSA, provides for articles of apparel and clothing, knitted or crocheted. Heading 6111, HTSUSA, provides for babies' garments and clothing accessories, knitted or crocheted. The submitted infant's coverall is classifiable in subheading 6111.20.6040, HTSUSA, which provides for, inter alia, other babies' garments of cotton.


The country of origin of the submitted infant's coverall is Korea. It is at the cutting process, in Korea, that the textile product last undergoes a substantial transformation and is transformed into a new and different article of commerce.

The infant's coverall is classified in subheading 6111.20.6040, HTSUSA, which provides for babies' garments and clothing accessories: of cotton: other; other. The applicable rate of duty is 8.6 percent ad valorem and the quota category is 239.

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, we suggest that your client check, close to the time of shipment, The Status Report on Current Import Quotas (Restraint Levels), an issuance of the U.S. Customs Service which is updated weekly and is available at the local Customs office.

Due to the changeable nature of the statistical annotation (the ninth and tenth digits of the classification) categories, your client should contact the local Customs office prior to importing the merchandise to determine the current status of any import restraints or requirements.

The holding set forth above applies only to the specific factual situation and merchandise identified in the ruling request. This position is clearly set forth in Section 177.9(b)(1), Customs Regulations (19 CFR 177.9(b)(1)). This section states that a ruling letter is issued on the assumption that all of the information furnished in the ruling letter, either directly, by reference, or by implication, is accurate and complete in every material respect.

Should it be subsequently determined that the information furnished is not complete and does not comply with 19 CFR 177.9(b)(1), the ruling will be subject to modification or revocation. In the event there is a change in the facts previously furnished this may affect the determination of country of origin. Accordingly, it is recommended that a new ruling request be submitted in accordance with Section 177.2, Customs Regulations (19 CFR 177.2).


John Durant, Director

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