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NY A84911

June 21, 1996

CLA-2-39:RR:NC:TP:221 A84911


TARIFF NO.: 3926.90.9890; 9802.00.80

Mr. Rick Boswell
Ortiz International, Inc.
306 Enterprise
P.O. Box 1505
Laredo, TX 78042-1505

RE: The tariff classification of cooling bandanas from Mexico.

Dear Mr. Boswell:

In your letter dated June 10, 1996, on behalf of Medallion Knitwear, Pennsylvania, you requested a tariff classification ruling.

The bandana submitted with your request, style MKB01, is made of woven 65% polyester 35% cotton fabric and measures approximately 40 inches in length and 1 3/4 inches in width. Sewn inside the fabric is a small quantity of crosslinked modified acrylic polymer pellets. When the bandana is soaked in water, the pellets absorb many times their volume in water. The bandana can then be worn around the neck or forehead where the moisture helps cool the body. A small quantity of the polymer pellets was submitted with your request. You have also included a sample of the fabric from which style MKB01 is made. It is a piece of fabric cut into a V shape at each end, measuring approximately 4 inches in width and 41 1/2 inches between the longest points.

You indicate that the fabric is formed and cut in the United States, and the polymer pellets are of U.S. origin. The fabric and pellets will be shipped to Mexico. You state that style MKB01 is made by placing the pellets in the center of the fabric, folding the fabric over, sewing the ends of the fabric together, and stitching across the width of the bandana to isolate the pellets in the center of the bandana, where there will be the most contact with the skin. You state you will also be importing style MKB02. This bandana is similar to style MKB01, except that it is made from two 2 inch wide strips, cut to angled shapes at each end. In that case, the pellets will be placed between the two strips, and the two sides will be sewn together to seal the bandana.

The applicable subheading for the cooling bandanas, styles MKB01 and MKB02, will be 3926.90.9890, Harmonized Tariff Schedule of the United States (HTS), which provides for other articles of plastics and articles of other materials of headings 3901 to 3914. The rate of duty will be 5.3 percent ad valorem.

Subheading 9802.00.80, HTS, provides a partial duty exemption for articles assembled abroad in whole or in part of fabricated components, the product of the United States, which were exported in condition ready for assembly without further fabrication, have not lost their physical identity in such articles by change in form, shape or otherwise, and have not been advanced in value or improved in condition abroad except by being assembled and except by operations incidental to the assembly process such as cleaning, lubrication, and painting.

All three requirements of subheading 9802.00.80, HTS, must be satisfied before a component may receive a duty allowance. An article entered under this tariff provision is subject to duty upon the full value of the imported assembled article, less the cost or value of such U.S. components, upon compliance with the documentary requirements of section 10.24, Customs Regulations (19 CFR 10.24).

Section 10.14 (a), Customs Regulations [19 CFR 10.14 (a)], states that the components must be in condition ready for assembly without further fabrication at the time of their exportation from the United States to qualify for the exemption. Components will not lose their entitlement to the exemption by being subjected to operations incidental to the assembly either before, during, or after their assembly with other components. Section 10.16 (a) Customs Regulations [19 CFR 10.16 (a)] provides that the assembly operation performed abroad may consist of any method used to join or fit together solid components, such as welding, soldering, riveting, force fitting, gluing, laminating, sewing, or the use of fasteners. Operations incidental to the assembly are not considered further fabrication operations if they are of a minor nature. In the instant case, the sewing operations, both in sewing the pre-cut fabric to itself, in style MKB01, and in sewing two shaped pieces together, in style MKB02, are considered acceptable assembly operations. Folding the fabric and turning it inside out during the assembly operation are considered to be operations incidental to assembly pursuant to 19 CFR 10.16(b)(5) and (7). Therefore, the cooling bandanas may enter under subheading 9802.00.80, HTS, with allowances in duty for the cost or value of the U.S. produced fabric pieces and polymer pellets, upon compliance with the documentary requirements of 19 CFR 10.24.

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 Joan Mazzola at 212-466-5580.


Roger J. Silvestri

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