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HQ 958085

May 28, 1996

CLA-2 RR:TC:FC 958085 EAB
TARIFF NO.: 4811.90.8000

Ms. Danielle Lee
Global Fibres, Inc.
Two Executive Drive, Suite 740
Fort Lee, New Jersey 07024

RE: Thermal facsimile paper; QMS Inc.; HRL 958194; HRL 952506

Dear Ms. Lee:

This is in response to your correspondence dated May 10, 1995, in which you ask for written confirmation of the classification under the Harmonized Tariff Schedule of the United States Annotated (HTSUSA) of certain merchandise to be imported into the customs territory of the U.S.

We consider your request to be one for a binding ruling under 19 CFR 177, and respond accordingly.


The merchandise is described as "thermal fax paper" that "falls into the heading of 4811.90.8000 . . . ." No sample was submitted with the request.


Whether thermal facsimile paper is classified in chapter 37, chapter 39 or chapter 48 of the HTSUSA.


Merchandise imported into the U.S. is classified under the HTSUSA. Tariff classification is governed by the principles set forth in the General Rules of Interpretation (GRIs) and, in the absence of special language or context which otherwise requires, by the Additional U.S. Rules of Interpretation. The GRIs and the Additional U.S. Rules of Interpretation are part of the HTSUSA and are to be considered statutory provisions of law for all purposes.

GRI 1 requires that classification be determined first according to the terms of the headings of the tariff schedule and any relative section or chapter notes and, unless otherwise required, according to the remaining GRIs taken in order.

In QMS, Inc. v. U.S., CIT Slip Op. 95-65 (April 18, 1995), the Court of International Trade determined that polyethylene terephthalate sheets or film was properly classifiable as "photographic" film under heading 3702 of the HTSUSA applicable to the calendar years 1989 and 1990 entries at issue.

The HTSUSA (1996) contains a provision not found in the HTSUSA (1990), in view of which we do not find the foregoing case to be dispositive of the classification of this merchandise under the current tariff schedule. Furthermore, "photographic" film, among other conditions or characteristics in order to be classified under heading 3702, HTSUSA, must be sensitized. The film for which you are requesting a classification determination is not "sensitized," regardless of whether it is "photographic" film.

In Headquarters Ruling Letter 958194 (April 17, 1996), Customs determined that polyethylene terephthalate thermographic film in sheets or on rolls would be classifiable under subheading 3921.90.4000, HTSUSA, dutiable at the column 1 General rate of 4.2 percent ad valorem.

In Headquarters Ruling Letter 952506 (September 12, 1992), Customs determined that thermal paper for facsimile machines would be classifiable under heading 4811 (in rolls or sheets) or heading 4823 (cut to size or shape).


"Thermal fax paper" of a kind described in your correspondence dated May 10, 1995, is classifiable under subheading 4811.90.8000, HTSUSA, a provision for "Other paper, paperboard, cellulose wadding and webs of cellulose fibers: Other: Other: Other: Weighing over 30 g/m2" and dutiable at the column one General rate of 1.6 percent ad valorem.


John Durant, Director
Tariff Classification

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