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NY A81621

April 16, 1996

CLA-2-59:RR:NC:TP:350: A81621


TARIFF NO.: 5903.10.2500

Mr. Joseph C. Grogan
Weavetex Fabrics Inc.
501 7th Avenue., #502
New York, NY 10018

RE: The tariff classification of an imitation leather material of textile/plastic laminate, from Korea.

Dear Mr. Grogan:

In your letter (undated) which was received by this office March 20, 1996, you requested a classification ruling.

The instant sample, which was not identified as to style or quality number, consists of a warp knit polyester man-made fiber fabric that has been brushed, dyed and printed to simulate natural leather. This material has in turn been laminated to a cellular polyvinyl chloride plastics material, with a smooth compact outer skin. You did not indicate the end use of this material, but did provide the following technical specifications: Wt. of textile: 280g/m2 (48%)
Wt. of PVC: 300g/m2 (52%)
Total Wt.: 580g/m2 (100%)

You suggest classification in subheading 3921.12.1100, HTS, which covers "Other plates, sheets, ..., of plastics:, Cellular:, Of PVC:, over 70 percent by weight plastic." This subheading would only apply if the textile fabric is present merely for reinforcing purposes. [Chapter 59 note 2. (a) (5)]. "Reinforcing purposes" is defined in the Explanatory Notes, which, while not in the legal text of the Tariff Schedule, are the official interpretations of the Tariff. The pertinent note in Chapter 39 reads:

Plastics and textile combinations.

(d) Plates, sheets and strip of cellular plastics combined with textile fabrics, felt or nonwovens, where the textile is present merely for reinforcing purposes.

In this respect, unfigured, unbleached, bleached or uniformly dyed textile fabrics, when applied to one face only of these plates, sheets or strip, are regarded as serving merely for reinforcing purposes. Figured, printed or more elaborately worked textiles (e.g., by raising) and special products, such as pile fabrics, tulle and lace and textile products of heading 58.11, are regarded as having a function beyond that of mere reinforcement. (emphasis added).

The textile component of your material has been heavily brushed, dyed, and printed to simulate real leather, therefore, the fabric is considered to be more elaborately worked and excludes the subject material from consideration under subheading 3921.12.

The applicable subheading for the product will be 5903.10.2500, Harmonized Tariff Schedule of the United States (HTS), which provides for textile fabrics impregnated, coated, covered or laminated, with plastics, with polyvinyl chloride, of man-made fibers, not over 70 percent by weight of rubber or plastics. The duty rate will be 8.3 percent ad valorem.

This merchandise falls within textile category designation 229. Based upon international textile trade agreements products of Korea are subject to quota and the requirement of a visa.

The designated textile and apparel categories may be subdivided into parts. If so, visa and quota requirements applicable to the subject merchandise may be affected. Part categories are the result of international bilateral agreements which are subject to frequent renegotiations and changes. To obtain the most current information available, we suggest that you check, close to the time of shipment, the Status Report on Current Import Quotas (Restraint Levels), an internal issuance of the U.S. Customs Service, which is available for inspection at your local Customs office.

This ruling is being issued under the provisions of Part 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 the ruling, contact National Import Specialist George Barth at 212-466-5884.


Roger J. Silvestri

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