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NY B87173

July 15, 1997

CLA-2-95:RR:NC:2:224 B87173


TARIFF NO.: 9506.99.2000

Karl Schneider
Griffin Transport Services, Inc.
1095 Spice Island Dr. Ste. 100
Sparks NV 89431

RE: The tariff classification of shoulder pads from China.

Dear Mr. Schneider:

In your letter dated June 1, 1997, you requested a tariff classification ruling on behalf of Donzis Athletics.

The merchandise is identified as American football shoulder pads. The pads consist of two components: the outer hard plastic "main shell" and the inner nylon "vest" which contains the greatest number of protective foam pockets. The shell and vest are connected by Velcro tabs. The shoulder pads will be imported in their entirety initially while later shipments may consist of one or the other of the components for purposes of replacement or spare parts.

Heading 9506 of the Harmonized Tariff Schedule of the United States (HTS) provides, in pertinent part, for articles and equipment for athletics, other sports or outdoor games. Note 1(e) to chapter 95 of the HTS states that the chapter does not cover sports clothing. However, the Explanatory Notes to heading 9506, HTS, indicate that the heading covers protective equipment for sports or games, including breast plates, elbow pads, knee pads, cricket pads, and shin guards, all of which provide protection for bones closely underlying the skin and having little natural protection. We consider the sample shoulder pad, imported either in its entirety or as separate components in the form of the hard plastic shell or the inner nylon vest, as the type of sport protective equipment intended for inclusion in heading 9506 of the HTS.

The applicable subheading for the American football shoulder pads will be 9506.99.2000, HTS, which provides for "Articles and equipment for general physical exercise, gymnastics, athletics, other sports...: Football, soccer and polo articles and equipment, except balls, and parts and accessories thereof." The rate of duty will be 2 percent ad valorem.

This ruling is being issued under the provisions of Part 177 of the Customs Regulations (19 C.F.R. 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 Tom McKenna at 212-466-5475.


Gwenn Klein Kirschner
Chief, Special Products Br.

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