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HQ 959530





October 1, 1996
CLA-2 RR:TC:TE 959530 jb

CATEGORY: CLASSIFICATION

Brenda A. Jacobs, Esq.
Powell, Goldstein, Frazer & Murphy
1001 Pennsylvania Avenue, N.W., 6th Floor Washington, D.C. 20004

RE: Country of origin determination for jean-style skirts; 19 CFR ?102.21(c)(4); most important manufacturing process

Dear Ms. Jacobs:

This is in reply to your letter dated July 24, 1996, on behalf of the Singapore Trade Development Board, requesting a country of origin determination for certain women's jean-style skirts which will be imported into the United States.

FACTS:

The submitted merchandise, women's woven jean-style skirts, feature a waistband, belt loops, front side pockets and a right coin pocket, back yokes, back patch pockets and hemming at the bottom of the garments. The manufacturing operations are as follows:

Scenario I

COUNTRY A

- pattern making and marking;
- fabric (sourced in Hong Kong) is cut to shape; - front pockets are sewn;
- zipper fly is set;
- back pockets are sewn;
- front rise is sewn.

COUNTRY B

- back yokes (also known as risers) are sewn; - back rise is sewn;
- waistband is sewn; front waistband consists of a separate band and the back waistband consists of a self-fabric folded over and sewn; the elastic for the back waistband is sourced in either Tawian, China or Japan;
- side seams are sewn;
- labels are sewn;
- skirt bottom is hemmed;
- beltloops are sewn;
- buttons and rivets are sewn;
- washing;
- finishing;
- packing.

Scenario II

COUNTRY A

- pattern making and marking;
- fabric (sourced in Hong Kong) is cut to shape; - front pockets are sewn;
- zipper fly is set;
- back pockets are sewn.

COUNTRY B

- front rise is sewn;
- back yokes are sewn;
- back rise is sewn;
- waistband is sewn; front waistband consists of a separate band and the back waistband consists of a self-fabric folded over and sewn; the elastic for the back waistband is sourced in either Taiwan, China or Japan;
- side seams are sewn;
- labels are sewn;
- skirt bottom is hemmed;
- beltloops are sewn;
- buttons and rivets are sewn;
- washing;
- finishing;
- packing.

Scenario III

COUNTRY A

- pattern making and marking;
- fabric (sourced in Hong Kong) is cut to shape; - front pockets are sewn;
- zipper fly is set.

COUNTRY B

- front rise is sewn;
- back yokes are sewn;
- back pockets are sewn;
- back rise is sewn;
- waistband is sewn; front waistband consists of a separate band and the back waistband consists of a self-fabric folded over and sewn; the elastic for the back waistband is sourced in either Taiwan, China or Japan;
- side seams are sewn;
- labels are sewn;
- skirt bottom is hemmed;
- beltloops are sewn;
- buttons and rivets are sewn;
- washing;
- finishing;
- packing.

Scenario IV

COUNTRY A

- pattern making and marking;
- fabric (sourced in Hong Kong) is cut to shape; - front pockets are sewn;
- zipper fly is set;
- back pockets are sewn;
- back yokes are sewn.

COUNTRY B

- front rise is sewn;
- back rise is sewn;
- waistband is sewn; front waistband consists of a separate band and the back waistband consists of a self-fabric folded over and sewn; the elastic for the back waistband is sourced in either Taiwan, China or Japan;
- side seams are sewn;
- labels are sewn;
- skirt bottom is hemmed;
- beltloops are sewn;
- buttons and rivets are sewn.

COUNTRY A

- washing;
- finishing;
- packing.

ISSUE:

What is the country of origin of the subject merchandise?

LAW AND ANALYSIS:

On December 8, 1994, the President signed into law the Uruguay Round Agreements Act. Section 334 of that Act (codified at 19 U.S.C. 3592) provides new rules of origin for textiles and apparel entered, or withdrawn from warehouse, for consumption, on and after July 1, 1996. On September 5, 1995, Customs published Section 102.21, Customs Regulations, in the Federal Register, implementing Section 334 (60 FR 46188). Thus, effective July 1, 1996, the country of origin of a textile or apparel product shall be determined by sequential application of the general rules set forth in paragraphs (c)(1) through (5) of Section 102.21.

Paragraph (c)(1) states that "The country of origin of a textile or apparel product is the single country, territory, or insular possession in which the good was wholly obtained or produced." As the subject merchandise is not wholly obtained or produced in a single country, territory or insular possession, paragraph (c)(1) of Section 102.21 is inapplicable.

Paragraph (c)(2) states that "Where the country of origin of a textile or apparel product cannot be determined under paragraph (c)(1) of this section, the country of origin of the good is the single country, territory, or insular possession in which the foreign material incorporated in that good underwent an applicable change in tariff classification, and/or met any other requirement, specified for the good in paragraph (e) of this section."

Paragraph (e) states that "The following rules shall apply for purposes of determining the country of origin of a textile or apparel product under paragraph (c)(2) of this section:"

6201-6208 If the good consists of two or more component parts, a change to an assembled good of heading 6201 through
6208 from unassembled components, provided that the change is the result of the good being wholly assembled in a single country, territory, or insular possession.

The subject submitted garments are classified in heading 6204, Harmonized Tariff Schedule of the United States (HTSUS). In the manufacturing scenarios you describe in your submission the multiple components for the garments are not wholly assembled in a single country. Accordingly, the terms of the tariff shift are not applicable.

Paragraph (c)(3) states that "Where the country of origin of a textile or apparel product cannot be determined under paragraph (c)(1) or (2) of this section":

(i) If the good was knit to shape, the country of origin of the good is the single country, territory, or insular possession in which the good was knit; or

(ii) Except for goods of heading 5609, 5807, 5811, 6213, 6214, 6301 through 6306, and 6308, and subheadings 6209.20.5040, 6307.10, 6307.90, and 9404.90, if the good was not knit to shape and the good was wholly assembled in a single country, territory, or insular possession, the country of origin of the good is the country, territory, or insular possession in which the good was wholly assembled.

As the subject merchandise is not knit, and the merchandise is not wholly assembled in one country, Section 102.21 (c)(3) is inapplicable.

Section 102.21 (c)(4) states, "Where the country of origin of a textile or apparel product cannot be determined under paragraph (c)(1), (2) or (3) of this section, the country of origin of the good is the single country, territory or insular possession in which the most important assembly or manufacturing process occurred". In the case of scenario I the most important assembly process occurs at the time the front pockets are sewn, the zipper fly is set, the back pockets are sewn and the front rise is sewn, in Country A. Accordingly, the country of origin is conferred in Country A. In scenario II the most important assembly process occurs at the time the front rise is sewn, the back yokes are sewn, the back rise is sewn, the side seams are sewn and the waistband is sewn, in Country B. Accordingly, the country of origin is conferred in Country B. In the case of scenario III the most important assembly process occurs at the time the front rise is sewn, the back yokes are sewn, the back pockets are sewn, the back rise is sewn, the side seams are sewn, and the waistband is sewn. Accordingly, the country of origin is conferred in Country B. In the case of scenario IV the most important assembly process occurs at the time the front rise is sewn, the back rise is sewn, the side seams are sewn and the waistband is sewn. Accordingly, the country of origin is conferred in Country B.

HOLDING:

The country of origin of the subject skirts in scenario I is Country A. The country of origin of the skirts in scenarios II through IV is Country B.

The holding set forth above applies only to the specific factual situation and merchandise identified in the ruling request. This position is clearly set forth in section 19 CFR 177.9(b)(1). This sections states that a ruling letter, either directly, by reference, or by implication, is accurate and complete in every material respect.

Should it be subsequently determined that the information furnished is not complete and does not comply with 19 CFR 177.9(b)(1), the ruling will be subject to modification or revocation. In the event there is a change in the facts previously furnished, this may affect the determination of country of origin. Accordingly, if there is any change in the facts submitted to Customs, it is recommended that a new ruling request be submitted in accordance with 19 CFR 177.2.

Sincerely,


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