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NY 872086

March 13, 1992

CLA-2-96:S:N:N1:113 872086


TARIFF NO.: 9609.10.0000

Mr. Jerry Ma
New Harbor Enterprises, Inc.
3000 Atrium Way, 5th Floor
Horizon Corporate Center
Mt. Laurel, NJ 08054

RE: The tariff classification of pencils from China

Dear Mr. Ma:

In your letter dated March 3, 1992, you requested a tariff classification ruling.

The merchandise is wood cased pencils. These are #2 lead, with gold color ferrule and pink eraser. They are imported painted white. The intention is that they will be imprinted with company logos or advertizing after importation.

The applicable subheading for the pencils will be 9609.10.0000, Harmonized Tariff Schedule of the United States (HTS), which provides for pencils and crayons, with leads encased in a rigid sheath. The rate of duty will be 14 cents per gross plus 4.3% ad valorem.

Section 304 of the Tariff Act of 1930, as amended (19 U.S.C. 1304) provides that, unless excepted, every article of foreign origin imported into the U.S. shall be marked in a conspicuous place as legibly, indelibly, and permanently as the nature of the article (or 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. The ultimate purchaser of the pencils is defined as the last person in the U.S., who will receive the article. 19 CFR 134.1(d)(2) also indicates that even if the imported article is distributed as a gift the recipient is the "ultimate purchaser." Consequently, whether the pencils may be given away by businesses as promotions or advertisements, or sold after imprinting, under the Customs regulations the recipient of the pencils, neither the importer nor the imprinter, would be considered the ultimate purchaser. Therefore, the individual pencils must be marked permanently, legibly and conspicuously, to indicate their country of origin to their recipient. Marking only the master carton in which the pencils are imported with the country of origin is not acceptable, since such carton will not reach the ultimate purchaser.

This ruling is being issued under the provisions of Section 177 of the Customs Regulations (19 C.F.R. 177).

A copy of this ruling letter should be attached to the entry documents filed at the time this merchandise is imported. If the documents have been filed without a copy, this ruling should be brought to the attention of the Customs officer handling the transaction.


Jean F. Maguire
Area Director

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