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NY B87928





August 18, 1997

MAR-2 RR:NC:2:221 B87928

CATEGORY: MARKING

Mr. Gerhard Grob
Jagro Inc.
290 Nye Avenue
Irvington, NJ 07111

RE: COUNTRY OF ORIGIN MARKING OF IMPORTED FILTER SHEETS

Dear Mr. Grob:

This is in response to your letter dated July 22, 1997, filed on behalf of Bogen Photo Corporation, requesting a country of origin marking ruling on filter sheets from the United Kingdom. Neither a marked sample nor a marked container was submitted with your letter.

Filter sheets measuring 24 inches by 24 inches will be imported 12 pieces to a carton. The carton but not the sheet is marked with the country of origin. After importation the sheets will be cut to 12 inches by 12 inches and repackaged 12 sheets to a carton. This carton as well as the smaller sheets will then be marked with the country of origin.

You have asked that the marking requirements be waived for the original 24" by 24" sheets.

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. Cutting the original sheets into smaller sheets does not substantially transform the sheets, and the importer cannot be considered the ultimate purchaser.

An article is excepted from marking under 19 U.S.C. 1304 (a)(3)(D) and section 134.32(d), Customs regulations (19 CFR 134.32(d)), if the marking of a container of such article will reasonably indicate the origin of such article. However, since the filter sheets are not imported in their marked retail container, whether the subject articles are excepted from individual marking under 19 CFR 134.32(d) is for the port director to decide. In this regard section 134.34, Customs Regulations (19 CFR 134.34), provides that an exception may be authorized in the discretion of the port director under 19 CFR 134.32(d) for imported articles which are to be repacked after release from Customs custody under the following conditions: (1) The containers in which the articles are repacked will indicate the origin of the articles to an ultimate purchaser in the U.S.; (2) The importer arranges for supervision of the marking of the containers by Customs officers at the importer's expense or secures such verification, as may be necessary, by certification and the submission of a sample or otherwise, of the marking prior to the liquidation of the entry.

In this case, assuming that the port director is satisfied that the imported filter sheets will be repacked in the manner described above, and that the other conditions set forth in 19 CFR 134.34 are met, the port director may authorize an exception under 19 CFR 134.32(d), in which case marking of the individual imported filter sheets will not be required.

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 Joan Mazzola at 212-466-5580.

Sincerely,

Gwenn Klein Kirschner
Chief, Special Products Branch

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