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NY B89519

October 1, 1997

CLA-2-48:RR:NC:SP:234 B89519


TARIFF NO.: 4819.40.0040; 3406.00.0000

Mr. Gary Klestadt
Trans-World Shipping Corp.
53 Park Place
New York, N.Y. 10007

RE: The tariff classification of gift bags from China and candles from Macau.

Dear Mr. Klestadt:

In your letter dated September 10, 1997, on behalf of Two's Company (Mount Vernon, NY), you requested a tariff classification ruling. Two samples were submitted and will be retained for reference.

The first item is identified as a "Poinsettia Gift Bag." It is a red, flat-bottomed paper bag with a base measuring approximately 5 x 13 cm and a height of 17 cm. Dual textile-cord carrying handles are attached at the top. Affixed to each of the two broad sides of the bag is a flat paperboard overlay, printed and die-cut to resemble poinsettias. These decorative overlays extend beyond the boundaries of the bag itself, largely obscuring the latter from view.

The second item is a box of three "Corona Globe Candles," each of which is a gold-colored candle in the shape of a sphere. They range from about 6 cm to 9 1/2 cm in diameter.

You have asked whether the above-described items are classifiable as festive articles in tariff heading 9505 based upon the impact of a recently decided court case initiated by Midwest of Cannon Falls (No. 96-1271, -1279 dated Aug. 14, 1997). The outcome of this case, however, is not applicable to the subject articles.

We consider the gift bag to be within the scope of goods described in the Harmonized Explanatory Note for heading 9505 as "packagings of paper." The note excludes such packagings from the heading.

With respect to the candles, we observe that their printed retail box makes no reference to any particular holiday, and simply suggests that the items be used to "add a luminous glow to your most memorable occasions." In this context, and in view of the fact that the candles themselves are not specific, holiday-related symbols, we find that they are simply functional, non-festive articles.

On the other hand, since the candles do resemble ball-type Christmas tree ornaments, it might be argued that they are in fact "Christmas candles." However, the aforementioned Explanatory Note also excludes "Christmas candles" from heading 9505.

The applicable subheading for the "Poinsettia Gift Bag" will be 4819.40.0040, Harmonized Tariff Schedule of the United States (HTS), which provides for other (than certain enumerated) sacks and bags of paper or paperboard. The rate of duty will be 3.7%.

The applicable subheading for the "Corona Globe Candles" will be 3406.00.0000, HTS, which provides for candles, tapers and the like. The rate of duty will be 2.3%.

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 Carl Abramowitz at 212-466-5733.


Robert B. Swierupski

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