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NY A80316

March 15,1996

MAR-2 RR:NC:GI:227 A80316


Mr. Leslie W. Polgar
The A.W. Fenton Co., Inc.
6565 Eastland Road
Cleveland, Ohio 44142-1388


Dear Mr. Polgar:

This is in response to your letter dated January 26, 1996, requesting a ruling on whether the proposed marking satisfies the marking requirements if the article itself is properly marked with the country of origin but the unsealed disposable container in which the article is imported is not marked. A marked sample was not submitted with your letter for review.

The merchandise at issue is a partially assembled lighting fixture from Taiwan in a carton marked with the country of origin. After importation into the United States the lighting fixture will be fully assembled with the use of U.S. made hardware. The completed lighting fixture, properly marked with the country of origin, will be repackaged. However, since the properly marked fixture is only sold from display outside of the carton, the carton will not be marked with the country of origin. The marking statute, section 304, Tariff Act of 1930, as amended (19 U.S.C. 1304), provides that, unless excepted, every article of foreign origin (or its container) imported into the U.S. shall be marked in a conspicuous place as legibly, indelibly and permanently as the nature of the article (or its container) will permit, in such a manner as to indicate to the ultimate purchaser in the U.S. the English name of the country of origin of the article.

Part 134, Customs Regulations (19 CFR Part 134), implements the country of origin marking requirements and exceptions of 19 U.S.C. 1304. Section 134.41(b), Customs Regulations (19 CFR 134.41(b)), mandates that the ultimate purchaser in the U.S. must be able to find the marking easily and read it without strain. Section 134.1(d), defines the ultimate purchaser as generally the last person in the U.S. who will receive the article in the form in which it was imported. If an imported article is to be sold
at retail in its imported form, the purchaser at retail is the ultimate purchaser. In this case, the ultimate purchaser of the imported lighting fixture is the consumer who purchases the product at retail.

The marking requirements for unsealed disposable containers of imported merchandise are set forth in section 134.24(d), Customs Regulations (19 CFR 134.24(d)). This section provides that "if the container is normally opened by the ultimate purchaser prior to purchase, only the article need be marked."

The imported lighting fixture is the type of article that a prospective purchaser would examine prior to purchase out of its container, and therefore the unsealed disposable containers are not required to be marked under 19 CFR 134.24(d). Properly marking the imported lighting fixture with the country of origin in the manner described above satisfies the marking requirements of 19 U.S.C. 1304 and 19 CFR Part 134 and is an acceptable country of origin marking for the imported product.

This ruling is being issued under the provisions of Part 177 of the Customs Regulations (19 CFR Part 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 Kalkines at 212-466-5794.


Roger J. Silvestri

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