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NY 805333

January 05, 1995
CLA-2-90:S:N:N3:119 805333


TARIFF NO.: 9021.19.8500

Mr. Leonard M. Fertman
2049 Century Park East, Suite 1800
Los Angeles, CA 90067

RE: The tariff classification, country of origin marking and status under the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA), of Orthodontic Ligatures from Mexico; Article 509

Dear Mr. Fertman:

In your letter dated December 13, 1994 you requested a ruling on the status of orthodontic ligatures from Mexico under the NAFTA. The request is being made on behalf of Ormco Corporation, Glendora, CA.

The orthodontic ligature to be imported consists of a 14-inch fine wire bent in two and the closed end shaped into a geometrical pattern with a small soldered loop. The ligature is manufactured from stainless steel wire shipped on a spool to Mexico where all the work is performed including cleaning and the packaging of the ligatures 100 pieces to a tube. There will be a gummed label marked "Made in Mexico" on each tube. The merchandise is sold to orthodontists only in those tubes of 100 pieces each.

The applicable tariff provision for the orthodontic ligatures will be 9021.19.8500, Harmonized Tariff Schedule of the United States Annotated (HTSUSA), which provides for artificial joints and other orthopedic or fracture appliances; parts and accessories thereof... other. The general rate of duty will be 4.6 percent.

In the case where the stainless steel wire is of U.S. origin, the ligatures will have been made entirely in the territory of the United States and Mexico using only originating materials. The merchandise will have satisfied the requirements of HTSUSA General Note 12(b)(iii). It will therefore be entitled to a free rate of duty under the NAFTA upon compliance with all applicable laws, regulations and agreements.

In the case where the stainless steel wire is supplied from a non-NAFTA country, the ligatures will have satisfied the change in tariff classification required under HTSUSA General Note 12(t)/90 and will be entitled to a free rate of duty under the NAFTA upon compliance with all applicable laws, regulations, and agreements.

In regard to the marking requirements, pursuant to Annex 311 of the North American Free Trade Agreement and Part 134 of the Customs Regulations, the country of origin marking described would be acceptable. This ruling is being issued under the provisions of Part 181 of the Customs Regulations (19 C.F.R. 181). A copy of this ruling letter should be attached to the entry documents filed at the time this merchandise is imported. If the documents have been filed without a copy, this ruling should be brought to the attention of the Customs officer handling the transaction.

This ruling letter is binding only as to the party to whom it is issued and may be relied on only by that party.


Jean F. Maguire
Area Director

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