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HQ 961242

March 10, 1998

CLA-2 RR:TC:TE 961242 jb


TARIFF NO: 6110.20.2075

Mr. Tommy Yuen
Hong Kong Economic and Trade Office
1520 18th Street, N.W.
Washington, D.C. 20036

RE: Classification of women's knitwear; Preclassification ruling, superseded

Dear Mr. Yuen:

This is in regard to your letter, dated December 24, 1997, on behalf of Jaymar Ruby Inc., requesting the tariff classification under the Harmonized Tariff Schedule of the United States Annotated (HTSUSA) for certain women's knitwear. A sample was submitted to this office and will be returned under separate cover.


The subject garment, referenced style number D13A-ASV, is a woman's knit sleeveless pullover composed of 100 percent cotton fabric with a rib knit at the neckline, armholes and waistband. The fabric of the garment has more than nine stitches per two centimeters, measured in the horizontal direction. The garment features a round neckline and an argyle pattern on the front panel which is formed by intarsia knitting. It is indicated that the garment is a size medium.

You state that in a preclassification ruling (PC) issued by our Chicago office to Jaymar Ruby, Inc., on July 21, 1997, (the specific PC ruling number is not clear from the photocopy submitted) the subject merchandise was classified in subheading 6110.20.2035, HTSUSA, which provides for sweaters, pullovers, sweatshirts, waistcoats (vests) and similar articles, knitted or crocheted: of cotton: other: other: vests, other than sweater vests: women's or girls', with corresponding quota category 359 (outervest). This classification is disputed because in your view, "the garment is appropriate and modest enough to be worn against the body or just over underwear". Accordingly, you propose classification as a blouse" with corresponding quota category 338/339.


What is the proper classification for the merchandise?


Classification of merchandise under the HTSUSA is in accordance with the General Rules of Interpretation (GRI). GRI 1 requires that classification be determined according to the terms of the headings and any relative section or chapter notes. Where goods cannot be classified solely on the basis of GRI 1, the remaining GRI will be applied, in the order of their appearance.

Heading 6106, HTSUS, provides for women's or girls' blouses and shirts, knitted or crocheted. As Note 4 of Chapter 61, HTSUSA, states that heading 6106, HTSUS, does not include garments with ribbed waistbands, the subject garment which features a ribbed waistband, is precluded from classification as a blouse.

Heading 6110, HTSUS, provides for sweaters, pullovers, sweatshirts, waistcoats (vests) and similar articles, knitted or crocheted. To accurately determine whether the subject garment could be worn alone, the sample was placed on an appropriately sized dressmaker's form. Upon examination we noted that the armhole openings are not oversized; the armholes are only large enough to accommodate the wearer's arms. Additionally, the neckline fits snugly around the form's neck. These factors are indicative that the garment is not designed for wear over another outerwear garment. If the subject garment was intended for wear as an outervest, the garment would feature oversized armholes and a deep neckline to give the wearer extra room to fit another outerwear garment underneath. Accordingly, as the snug styling of the subject garment suggests a garment which is not designed for wear over another outerwear garment, but for wear alone or over underwear, the garment is classified in subheading 6110.20.2075, HTSUSA.


The subject knit garment, referenced style number D13A-ASV, is classified in subheading 6110.20.2075, HTSUSA, which provides for, sweaters, pullovers, sweatshirts, waistcoats (vests) and similar articles, knitted or crocheted: of cotton: other: other: other: women's or girls'. The applicable rate of duty is 19 percent ad valorem and the quota category is 339.

As such, this ruling letter supersedes the above referenced preclassification ruling with respect to the classification of the subject knit sleeveless pullover.

The designated textile and apparel category may be subdivided into parts. If so, visa and quota requirements applicable to the subject merchandise may be affected. Since part categories are the result of international bilateral agreements which are subject to frequent negotiations and changes, we suggest that you check, close to the time of shipment, the Status Report on Current Import Quotas (Restraint Levels), an issuance of the U.S. Customs Service which is updated weekly and is available at the local Customs office.

Due to the changeable nature of the statistical annotation (the ninth and tenth digits of the classification) categories, you should contact the local Customs office prior to importing the merchandise to determine the current status of any import restraints or requirements.


John Durant, Director
Commercial Rulings Division

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