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HQ 952945

MARCH 15, 1993

CLA-2:CO:R:C:M 952945 JAS


TARIFF NO.: 8428.39.00, HTSUS

District Director of Customs
P.O. Box 37260
Milwaukee, WI 53110

RE: Slab Discharger; Slab Discharge Table; Motor-Powered Roller Table With Kick-Off Arms; Mechanical Device for Handling Continuous Cast Slab; Roller Conveyor, Heading 8428; Casting Machine Part, Heading 8454; PRD 3701-92-100051

Dear Sir:

This is our decision on Application for Further Review of Protest No. 3701-92-100051, filed by PMX Industries, Inc., against your action in liquidating an entry of a slab discharger from Austria.


Blueprints and a commercial invoice depict slab discharge equipment for a vertical slab casting machine. It consists of a series of motor-driven rollers comprising a roller table with kick-off arms, and is used to push a hot cast slab off the casting machine onto conveyors after it has been torch cut from a continuous cast slab. The conveyors transport the cut slab to another location in the plant where it is further processed.

The slab discharge machine was entered under the provision for parts of casting machines of a kind used in metallurgy or in metal foundries, in 8454.90.00, Harmonized Tariff Schedule of the United States (HTSUS). The concerned import specialist found that the slab discharge equipment was more specifically described in subheading 8428.90.00, HTSUS, as other lifting, handling, loading or unloading machinery (for example, elevators, escalators, conveyors, teleferics), and liquidated the entry accordingly. - 2 -


Whether the slab discharger is provided for as part of a casting machine; whether it is specially provided for as a good of heading 8428.


Merchandise is classifiable under the Harmonized Tariff Schedule of the United States (HTSUS) in accordance with the General Rules of Interpretation (GRIs). GRI 1 states in part that for legal purposes, classification shall be determined according to the terms of the headings and any relative section or chapter notes, and provided the headings or notes do not require otherwise, according to GRIs 2 through 6.

The Harmonized Commodity Description And Coding System Explanatory Notes (ENs) constitute the Customs Cooperation Council's official interpretation of the Harmonized System. While not legally binding on the contracting parties, and therefore not dispositive, the ENs provide a commentary on the scope of each heading of the Harmonized System and are thus useful in ascertaining the classification of merchandise under the System. Customs believes the notes should always be consulted. See T.D. 89-80.

To be a "part" for tariff purposes, an article must be necessary to the completion of some other article. It must be an integral, constituent, or component part, without which the article to which it is to be joined could not function as that article. On a case-by-case basis, the nature, function and purpose of the supposed "part" must be examined in relation to the article to which it is attached or designed to serve. For tariff purposes, a continuous casting machine consists of the equipment from the ladle turret, which holds the ladle containing molten steel, through and including the slab cut-off table. These are the components necessary to the creation of a slab. In this case, the slab discharge table is physically located after the cut-off machine and serves simply to remove the slab after it has been formed and cut. It does not qualify as a "part" of the casting machine for tariff purposes.

Relevant ENs, at pp. 1197-1199, indicate that heading 8428 covers machinery for the mechanical handling of goods even if specialized for a particular industry, such as metallurgy. The notes describe conveyors as a type of continuous action machines that are used for moving goods, usually in a horizontal direction, sometimes over very long distances. Of the types described are conveyors consisting of a train of motor-driven rollers (e.g., as used for feeding steel into cogging mills). In our opinion, the slab discharge machine is essentially a roller conveyor designed to transport the cut slab away from the casting - 3 -
machine. The presence of the kick-off arms do not serve to remove the discharge table from heading 8428. They facilitate movement of the cut slab and, in our opinion, augment the overall use of the roller conveyor.


Under the authority of GRI 1, the slab discharge machine is provided for as handling machinery in heading 8428. They are classifiable in subheading 8428.39.00, HTSUS, as other continuous-action conveyors. Since the rate of duty under subheading 8428.39.00 is the same as the liquidated rate, the protest should be denied.

A copy of this decision should be attached to the Customs Form 19 and mailed to protestant as part of the notice of action on the protest.


John Durant, Director
Commercial Rulings Division

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