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HQ 959222

May 15, 1996

CLA-2 RR:TC:TE 959222 jb


Harold I. Loring, Esq.
Grunfeld, Desiderio, Lebowitz & Silverman LLP 245 Park Avenue
New York, NY 10167-0002

RE: Clarification of HQ 958851, dated February 22, 1996

Dear Mr. Loring:

This is in regard to Headquarters Ruling Letter (HQ) 958851, issued to you from this office on February 22, 1996. In HQ 958851 Customs determined the country of origin of a woman's blouse pursuant to Section 102.21, Customs Regulations (19 CFR 102.21). Upon further review, Customs has determined that the rationale stated in HQ 958851 should be clarified.

The manufacturing operations performed in Country A included the cutting to shape of the two front panels, single back panel, sleeves components, pocket components, collar components, cuff components and yoke. Additionally, the pockets were hemmed and sewn to the front panels, collar components were attached to form the collar, cuff components were attached to form the cuffs, the yoke was attached to the back panel, and the front panel was placketed and buttonholed.

Although HQ 958851 correctly determined that the country of origin of the blouse was conferred by Country B, it failed to cite the appropriate Section of 102.21 by which the determination was made. Section 102.21(c)(2), the tariff shift rule, was incorrectly cited as the determinative paragraph. Section 102.21(c)(2) is not applicable to the facts in Country A because there are important manufacturing operations which occur there; as for example the pockets which are sewn to the front panels and the yoke which is attached to the back panel. Thus, as important assembly operations occur in both Country A and Country B, it cannot be said that the garment was "wholly assembled" in Country B. As such, Section 102.21(c)(2) is inapplicable.

Section 102.21(c)(3) is also not applicable because the merchandise is neither knit not wholly assembled in a single country. Section 102.21(c)(4) states that where country of origin cannot be determined under paragraph (c)(1),(2) or (3), the country of origin of the good is the single country in which the most important assembly or manufacturing process occurred. In the case of the subject merchandise, the most important assembly processes occur in Country B.

Accordingly, the determination in HQ 958851 remains the same, that is, the country of origin of the subject women's shirt is Country B. Country B confers country of origin because that is where the most important assembly processes occurred.


John Durant, Director

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