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NY A81464

March 20, 1996

CLA-2-24:RR:NC:FC:231 A81464


TARIFF NO.: 2402.20.8000

Ms. Roxana Pino A.
Cigatam S.A. de C.V.
Manuel Salazar 132
Azcapotzalco 02400

RE: The tariff classification and status under the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA) of cigarettes from Mexico; Article 509

Dear Ms. Pino:

In your letter, dated March 12, 1996, you requested a ruling on the status of cigarettes from Mexico under the NAFTA.

The merchandise is comprised of cigarettes.

The applicable tariff provision for the cigarettes will be 2402.20.8000, Harmonized Tariff Schedule of the United States (HTS), which provides for cigars, cheroots, cigarillos and cigarettes, of tobacco or of tobacco substitutes, cigarettes containing tobacco, other, paper-wrapped. The general rate of duty will be $1.91 per kilogram, plus 4.1 percent ad valorem.

The cigarettes, being wholly obtained or produced entirely in the territory of Mexico, will meet the requirements of HTSUSA General Note 12(b)(i), and will therefore be entitled to a $1.638 per kilogram, plus 3.5 percent ad valorem rate of duty under the NAFTA upon compliance with all applicable laws, regulations, and agreements.

In addition, imports under this provision are subject to a Federal Excise Tax as follows:

Class "A:" $12.00 per 1,000 on cigarettes, weighing not more than 3 pounds per 1,000;

Class "B:" $25.20 per 1,000 cigarettes, weighing more than 3 pounds per 1,000; except that, if more than 6 1/2 inches in length they shall be taxable at the rate prescribed for cigarettes weighing not more than 3 pounds per 1,000, counting each 2 3/4 inches, or fraction thereof, of the length of each as one cigarette.

You are also advised that each package should have adequately printed thereon, or on a label securely fixed thereto, the designation "Cigarettes," the number of cigarettes contained therein, and the words "Class A" or "Class B." Each package is also required to be marked to show the country of origin.

Effective December 18, 1985, P.L. 98-474, The Comprehensive Smoking Education Act, requires the display of four specific health warning labels on cigarette packages and cigarette advertising. The labels would be rotated on a quarterly basis in alternating sequence pursuant to a plan prepared by the importer and approved by the Federal Trade Commission. The four warning statements required on cigarette packages are listed below:

SURGEON GENERAL'S WARNING: Smoking Causes Lung Cancer, Heart Disease, Emphysema, And May Complicate Pregnancy.

SURGEON GENERAL'S WARNING: Quitting Smoking Now Greatly Reduces Serious Risks To Your Health.

SURGEON GENERAL'S WARNING: Smoking By Pregnant Women May Result In Fetal Injury, Premature Birth, And Low Birth Weight.

SURGEON GENERAL'S WARNING: Cigarette Smoke Contains Carbon Monoxide.

Any questions with regard to P.L. 98-474 should be addressed to the Federal Trade Commission, Washington, DC 20580.

This ruling is being issued under the provisions of Part 177 of the Customs Regulations (19 CFR 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 Ralph Conte at (212) 466-5759.


Roger J. Silvestri

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