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HQ 955205

January 14, 1994

CLA-2 CO:R:C:F 955205 GGD


TARIFF NO.: 9503.60.20

District Director of Customs
50 South Main Street, Room 218
Post Office Box 1490
St. Albans, Vermont 05478

RE: Decision on Application for Further Review of Protest No. 0201-93-100256, filed June 21, 1993, concerning the classification of various puzzle books.

Dear Sir:

This is a decision on a protest filed on June 21, 1993, against your decision in the classification and liquidation of entries in May 1993, of various books of puzzles from Canada.


You classified the merchandise under subheading 9503.60.20, Harmonized Tariff Schedule of the United States Annotated (HTSUSA), the provision for "Other toys...puzzles of all kinds; and accessories thereof: Puzzles and parts and accessories thereof: Other," with an applicable duty rate of 3.4 percent ad valorem. Protestant claims that the merchandise should be classified either under subheading 4901.99.0093, HTSUSA, as printed books containing 49 or more pages, or under subheading 4911.99.8000, HTSUSA, as other printed matter. The applicable duty rate for each of the claimed provisions is free.

The puzzle books under consideration are identified as "Big World of Puzzles," "Big World of Search & Find," and "Biggest and Best Search & Find." Each book essentially consists of various puzzles in which letters are printed in what appears to be random fashion. Through the user's search efforts, words whose letters are set out in varied directions, may be identified within the larger grouping of letters.


Whether the articles are properly classified in heading 4901, HTSUSA, as printed books; in heading 4911, HTSUSA, as other printed matter; or in heading 9503, HTSUSA, as other toys, puzzles.


Classification under the HTSUSA is made in accordance with the General Rules of Interpretation (GRIs). The systematic detail of the harmonized system is such that virtually all goods are classified by application of GRI 1, that is, according to the terms of the headings of the tariff schedule and any relative Section or Chapter Notes. In the event that the goods cannot be classified solely on the basis of GRI 1, and if the headings and legal notes do not otherwise require, the remaining GRIs may then be applied. The Explanatory Notes (ENs) to the Harmonized Commodity Description and Coding System, which represent the official interpretation of the tariff at the international level, facilitate classification under the HTSUSA by offering guidance in understanding the scope of the headings and GRIs.

Heading 4901, HTSUSA, provides for printed books, brochures, leaflets and similar printed matter. The EN to heading 4901 indicates that the heading covers virtually all printed reading matter, including books consisting essentially of textual matter, and literary works of all kinds. The EN points out that printed matter not constituting a literary text is excluded from the heading. The American College Dictionary (1970), defines the word "literature," in pertinent part as "1. writings in which expression and form, in connection with ideas of permanent and universal interest, are characteristic or essential features, as poetry, romance, history, biography, essays, etc....5. literary work or production." Mindful of these definitions and the EN's guidance, we find that the puzzle books are not literary texts or works, and are thus excluded from heading 4901.

Heading 4911, HTSUSA, provides for other printed matter. The EN to heading 4911 indicates that the heading covers all printed matter that is not more particularly covered by the preceding headings of the chapter. However, the EN also states that excluded from the heading are "[p]rinted paper toys (e.g., children's cut-out sheets), playing cards and the like, and other printed games (Chapter 95)." Although puzzles do not happen to fit the sole example provided for paper toys, we nevertheless find the puzzle books to be excluded from heading 4911,
particularly since the tariff expressly provides elsewhere - in heading 9503 - for "Other toys...puzzles of all kinds; and accessories thereof."

Although the term "toy" is not defined in the tariff, the EN to chapter 95 indicates that a toy is an article designed for the amusement of children or adults. It is clear that the various puzzle books are designed for amusement, a purpose not necessarily served by, nor mentioned in conjunction with, articles classified in Chapter 49, HTSUSA.

Having determined that the proper heading for the goods is 9503, we note that the only six digit provision which accurately describes the puzzle books is subheading 9503.60, HTSUSA, which covers "Puzzles and parts and accessories thereof." Subheading 9503.60.20, HTSUSA, provides for puzzles other than crossword puzzle books, and is the proper classification for the subject goods.


The various puzzle books, identified as "Big World of Puzzles," "Big World of Search & Find," and "Biggest and Best Search & Find," are properly classified in subheading 9503.60.20, HTSUSA, the provision for "Other toys...puzzles of all kinds; and accessories thereof: Puzzles and parts and accessories thereof: Other."

Goods classifiable under subheading 9503.60.20, HTSUSA, which have originated in the territory of Canada, and are imported on or prior to December 31, 1993, will be entitled to a duty rate of 3.4 percent ad valorem, under the United States- Canada Free Trade Agreement (FTA), upon compliance with all applicable regulations. Effective January 1, 1994, with the implementation of the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA), preferential treatment for goods under the FTA will be discontinued.

The protest should be denied in full. A copy of this decision should be attached to the Form 19 to be returned to the protestant.

In accordance with Section 3A(11)(b) of Customs Directive 099 3550-065, dated August 4, 1993, Subject: Revised Protest Directive, this decision should be mailed by your office to the protestant no later than 60 days from the date of this letter.

Any reliquidation of the entry in accordance with the decision must be accomplished prior to mailing of the decision. Sixty days from the date of the decision, the Office of Regulations and Rulings will take steps to make the decision available to Customs personnel via the Customs Rulings Module in ACS, and to the public via the Diskette Subscription Service, Lexis, the Freedom of Information Act and other public access channels.


John Durant, Director

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