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HQ 559845

September 9, 1996

CLA-2 RR:TC:SM 559845 MLR


TARIFF NO.: 9801.00.10

Mr. R. H. Fisk
Edlow International Company
1666 Connecticut Ave., N.W.
Suite 201
Washington, D.C. 20009

RE: Applicability of duty exemption to radioactive materials

Dear Mr. Fisk:

This is in reference to your letter of May 10, 1996, requesting a ruling regarding the applicability of a duty exemption to certain radioactive materials.


It is stated that your client plans to import into the U.S. fully fabricated nuclear fuel assemblies, which are no longer usable in their existing form. The assemblies will be entering the U.S. for defabrication, and uranium from these assemblies will be returned to the owners abroad. It is stated that the enriched uranium content of the fuel assemblies must be exported from the U.S. within 12 months in accordance with provisions of suspension agreements. The uranium contained in the individual assemblies is of German origin and was enriched in the former Soviet Union. Once the uranium is removed from the fuel assembly, the remaining components will consist of metal, 35 percent of which will be disposed of as contaminated waste.


Whether any relief from duty may be obtained on the complete fuel assembly imported into the U.S.


U.S. Note 2, Chapter 98, Harmonized Tariff Schedule of the United States (HTSUS), states that:

[i]n the absence of a specific provision to the contrary, the tariff status of an article is not affected by the fact that it was previously imported into the customs territory of the United States and cleared through customs whether or not duty was paid upon such previous importation.

In this case, no evidence is presented that the imported fuel assemblies were previously imported into the U.S., or that if they were previously imported that they are products of the U.S. eligible for entry under subheading 9801.00.10, HTSUS. We are also unaware of any other tariff provision allowing for a duty exemption for the subject materials. Accordingly, it appears that the materials will be fully dutiable upon importation into the U.S.


On the basis of the information submitted, it is our opinion that the materials will be fully dutiable upon importation into the U.S.


John Durant, Director

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