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HQ 559799

August 19, 1996

MAR 2-10 RR:TC:SM 559799 KBR


William J. Rodemoyer
Director of Purchasing & Traffic
Wheatland Tube Company
1 Council Avenue
Wheatland, PA 16161

RE: Marking of Pipe, NAFTA

Dear Mr. Rodemoyer:

This is in response to your letter dated April 15, 1996, concerning the marking of pipe imported from Canada and processed in the U.S. with the country of origin marking, "Made in U.S.A."


You state that your company buys raw electric resistance welded pipe hollows in double random lengths from Canada. For purposes of this ruling we are assuming that these "pipe hollows" are a product of Canada. You state that the pipe hollows as imported have "saw-cut ends not machined", have not been tested, straightened, coated, or certified to a particular end use.

After importation, you state that your plant in Pennsylvania cuts the individual pipe hollow into two pieces, machine bevels both ends, mechanically straightens the piece, hydrostatically tests the piece to 3000 P.S.I., nondestructive eddy current tests each piece to insure weld integrity, stencils the pipe for end use specification, and either coats the pipe with clear lacquer or hot dip galvanizes the pipe. You wish to mark this finished pipe "Made in U.S.A."


May the processed pipe be marked "Made in U.S.A."?


Section 304 of the Tariff Act of 1930, as amended (19 U.S.C. 1304), provides that unless excepted, every article of foreign origin imported into the U.S. shall be marked in a conspicuous place as legibly, indelibly, and permanently as the nature of the article (or its container) will permit, in such a manner as to indicate to the ultimate purchaser in the U.S. the English name of the country of origin of the article. Congressional intent in enacting 19 U.S.C. 1304 was "that the ultimate purchaser should be able to know by an inspection of the marking on the imported goods the country of which the goods is the product. The evident purpose is to mark the goods so that at the time of purchase the ultimate purchaser may, by knowing where the goods were produced, be able to buy or refuse to buy them, if such marking should influence his will." United States v. Friedlander & Co., 27 C.C.P.A. 297 at 302; C.A.D. 104 (1940). Part 134, Customs Regulations (19 CFR Part 134), implements the country of origin marking requirements and the exceptions of 19 U.S.C. 1304.

Section 134.1(b) of the regulations defines "country of origin" as:
the country of manufacture, production, or growth of any article of foreign origin entering the U.S. Further work or material added to an article in another country must effect a substantial transformation in order to render such other country the "country of origin" within this part; however, for a good of a NAFTA country, the NAFTA marking rules will determine the country of origin.
(Emphasis added).

Section 134.1(g) of the regulations, defines a "good of a NAFTA country" as an article for which the country of origin is Canada, Mexico, or the U.S. as determined under the NAFTA marking rules. The NAFTA marking rules are set forth in 19 CFR Part 102, as amended.

Section 134.35(b), provides that:

A good of a NAFTA country which is to be processed in a manner that would result in the good becoming a good of the United States under the NAFTA Marking Rules is excepted from marking. Unless the good is processed by the importer or on its behalf, the outermost container of the good shall be marked in accord with this part.

Section 102.11, Customs Regulations ("Marking Rules")(19 CFR country of origin for marking purposes. Section 102.11(a) of the regulations states that "[t]he country of origin of a good is the country in which:

(1) The good is wholly obtained or produced; (2) The good is produced exclusively from domestic materials; or
(3) Each foreign material incorporated in that good undergoes an applicable change in tariff classification set out in section 102.20 and satisfies any other applicable requirements of that section, and all other requirements of these rules are satisfied."

Since the pipe is neither wholly obtained or produced in a single country nor produced exclusively from domestic materials, determined whether pursuant to ?102.11(a)(3), the foreign materials incorporated into the pipe meet the specific tariff rule of ?102.20. The finished pipe will be classified within heading 7305, HTSUS (Harmonized Tariff System of the United States) or 7306, HTSUS, depending on the dimension of the pipe. Thus, the specific tariff rule for these goods is set out in section 102.20(n) (Section XV: Chapters 72 through 83) of the regulations, which states: "A change to heading 7301 through 7307 from any other heading, including another heading within that group." The unprocessed pipe imported into the U.S. will fall within the same heading as the processed pipe. Therefore, the pipe does not meet the necessary tariff shift.

The next step in the hierarchy, 19 CFR ?102.11(b), states that where ?102.11(a) cannot be used to determine the origin of the good, the country of origin will be the country or countries of origin of the single material that imparts the essential character to the good. Pursuant to section 102.18(b)(1)(iii), the Canadian pipe hollows impart the essential character to the finished pipe. Therefore, pursuant to 19 CFR ?102.11(b), the country of origin of the finished pipe is Canada.

Further, you should be aware that even if Customs had determined that the pipe was a product of the U.S., this ruling would not have addressed whether the pipe may be marked with the U.S.A. symbol. The determination of whether a good may be marked "Made in USA" under any circumstances is under the primary jurisdiction of the Federal Trade Commission and not this Service. We therefore recommend that you contact the Federal Trade Commission, Division of Enforcement, located at 6th and Pennsylvania Avenue, N.W., Washington, D.C. 20580, for any views concerning marking a product which is of U.S. origin with the "USA" symbol.


Based on the information submitted, after processing, the pipe is a product of Canada, and must bear the appropriate country of origin marking.

A copy of this ruling letter should be attached to the entry documents filed at the time this merchandise is entered. 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
Tariff Classification Appeals

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