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NY 818170

February 7, 1996

CLA-2-85:RR:NC:MA: 112 818170


TARIFF NO.: 8543.89.9090; 8524.51.3040

Ms. Maureen D. Pearson
Katten Muchin & Zavis
525 West Monroe Street
Suite 1600
Chicago, IL 60661-3693

RE: The tariff classification of "See-A-Sound Phonics" from China

Dear Ms. Pearson:

In your letter dated January 9, 1996, on behalf of Vtech Industries, Inc., you requested a tariff classification ruling.

As indicated by the submitted sample, the "See-A-Sound Phonics" is a rectangular shaped unit constructed of hard plastic with a molded carrying handle, which incorporates an electronic device consisting of a keyboard with dot matrix LCD screen, and a cassette tape player. The electronic device portion of the unit contains a contrast switch for the LCD screen, on and off buttons, answer buttons, and other assorted buttons, including one for each letter of the alphabet and the numerals 0 through 9. The cassette tape player portion is equipped with five (5) control buttons for the various function (eject, play, etc.) but is not capable of recording.

Four (4) prerecorded audio tapes and two (2) workbooks are included with the unit. The audio tape, in conjunction with the electronic unit and LCD screen, guides the user through activities which appear in the corresponding workbook.

In your letter, you express the opinion that the "See-A-Sound Phonics" is properly classifiable under the subheading covering other cassette type sound reproducing apparatus (8519.93.8080) due to the fact that the item is a composite article and, in accordance with GRI 3(b), the essential character of the unit is imparted by the cassette tape player portion. This office does not believe that either the cassette tape player portion or the electronic keyboard portion imparts essential character, thereby requiring reliance on the language of GRI 3(c).

The applicable subheading for the "See-A-Sound Phonics" will be 8543.89.9090, Harmonized Tariff Schedule of the United States (HTS), which provides for other electrical machines and apparatus ...not specified or included elsewhere in Chapter 85. The rate of duty will be 3.4 percent ad valorem. In accordance with Chapter Note 6, Chapter 85, the cassette tapes remain separately classifiable under subheading 8524.51.3040, HTS, which provides for sound recordings on cassette tapes, of a width not exceeding 4mm. The rate of duty will be $.077 per square meter of recording surface.

This ruling is being issued under the provisions of Section 177 of the Customs Regulations (19 C.F.R. 177).

A copy of the ruling or the control number indicated above should be provided with the entry documents filed at the time this merchandise is imported. If you have any questions regarding this ruling, contact National Import Specialist David Curran at 212-466-5680.


Roger J. Silvestri

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