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January 21, 1999

CLA-2-61:RR:NC:TA:354 D84778


TARIFF NO.: 6116.93.8800

Mr. John B. Pellegrini
Ross & Hardies
65 East 55 Street
New York, New York 10022-3219

RE: The tariff classification and status under the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA), of string knit gloves from Mexico; Article 509

Dear Mr. Pellegrini:

In your letter dated November 13, 1998 you requested a ruling on the status of gloves from Mexico under the NAFTA, on behalf of Paris Accessories, Inc.

The provided sample is a string-knit glove (knit in Mexico) which you have indicated is made with acrylic/spandex chenille yarn produced in Taiwan. Additionally, you indicate that a fake fur cuff of acrylic knit fabric formed in Taiwan will be cut and stitched onto the glove in Mexico.

The applicable tariff provision for the glove will be 6116.93.8800, Harmonized Tariff Schedule of the United States Annotated (HTSUSA), which provides for gloves, mittens and mitts, knitted or crocheted: other: of synthetic fibers: other: other: without fourchettes. The duty rate will be 19.2 percent ad valorem.

NAFTA Eligibility

The subject string-knit glove undergoes processing operations in Mexico which is a country provided for under the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA). General Note 12, HTSUSA, incorporates Article 401 of the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA) into the HTSUSA. Note 12(a) provides, in pertinent part:

(ii) Goods that originate in the territory of a NAFTA party under subdivision (b) of this note and that qualify to be marked as goods of Mexico under the terms of the marking rules... and are entered under a subheading for which a rate of duty appears in the “Special” subcolumn followed by the symbol “MX” in parentheses, are eligible for such duty rate... . [Emphasis added]

Accordingly, the string knit glove at issue will be eligible for the “Special” “MX” rate of duty provided it is a NAFTA “originating” good under General Note 12(b), Harmonized Tariff Schedule of the Unites States Annotated (HTSUSA), and it qualifies to be marked as a good of Mexico. Note 12(b) provides, in pertinent part,

For the purposes of this note, goods imported into the customs territory of the United States are eligible for the tariff treatment and quantitative limitations set forth in the tariff schedule as “goods originating in the territory of a NAFTA party” only if??

(i) they are goods wholly obtained or produced entirely in the territory of Canada, Mexico and/or the United States; or

(ii) they have been transformed in the territory of Canada, Mexico and/or the United States so that??

(A) except as provided in subdivision (f) of this note, each of the non?originating materials used in the production of such goods undergoes a change in tariff classification described in subdivisions (r), (s) and (t) of this note or the rules set forth therein, or

(B) the goods otherwise satisfy the applicable requirements of subdivisions (r), (s) and (t) where no change in tariff classification is required, and the goods satisfy all other requirements of this note; or

(iii) they are goods produced entirely in the territory of Canada, Mexico and/or the United States exclusively from originating materials; or

The subject glove qualifies for NAFTA treatment only if the provisions of General Note 12(b)(ii)(A) are met, that is, if the merchandise is transformed in the territory of Mexico so that the non?originating material (the yarn of Taiwanese origin) undergoes a change in tariff classification as described in subdivision (t). When a good is composed of two or more components the General Rules of Interpretation of the Harmonized System (GRI) provide the following:

GRI 2 (b) provides that goods consisting of more than one material or substance shall be classified according to the principles of GRI 3. Since neither of the competing provisions is more specific we proceed from rule 3 (a) to rule 3 (b).

GRI 3 (b) reads in part:

Mixtures, composite goods consisting of different materials or made up of different components... which cannot be classified by reference to 3 (a), shall be classified as if they consisted of the material or component which gives them their essential character, insofar as this criterion is applicable.

In this case the essential character of the item is imparted by the string knit portion of the glove. The instant string-knit portion requires no sewing (assembly) to join separate components.

In addition, Chapter 61 rule 2 found in General Note 12(t) states:

For purposes of determining the origin of a good of this Chapter, the rule applicable to that good shall only apply to the component that determines the tariff classification of the good and such component must satisfy the tariff change requirements set out in the rule for that good. If the rule requires that the good must also satisfy the tariff change requirements for visible lining fabrics listed in Note 1 to this Chapter, such requirement shall only apply to the visible lining fabric in the main body of the garment, excluding sleeves, which covers the largest surface area, and shall not apply to removable linings.(emphasis added)

Here again the string knit component of the glove is required to meet the tariff change. As the knit glove is classifiable in subheading 6116.93.8800, HTSUSA, subdivision (t), Chapter 61, rule 39, applies. That note states:

A change to subheadings 6113 through 6117 from any other chapter, except from headings 5106 through 5113, 5204 through 5212, 5307 through 5308 or 5310 through 5311, chapter 54 or headings 5508 through 5516 or 6001 through 6002, provided that the good is both cut (or knit to shape) and sewn or otherwise assembled in the territory of one or more of the NAFTA parties.

The merchandise does not qualify for preferential treatment under the NAFTA because one or more of the non-originating materials used in the production of the good will not undergo the change in tariff classification required by General Note 12(t)/39, HTSUSA. The instant glove (in this case the string knit portion) does not satisfy the requirement that “the good is both cut (or knit to shape) and sewn or otherwise assembled in the territory of one of more of the NAFTA parties.

This ruling is being issued under the provisions of Part 181 of the Customs Regulations (19 C.F.R. 181).

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 Brian Burtnik at 212-466-5880.

Should you wish to request an administrative review of this ruling, submit a copy of this ruling and all relevant facts and arguments within 30 days of the date of this letter, to the Director, Commercial Rulings Division, Headquarters, U.S. Customs Service, 1300 Pennsylvania Ave. N.W., Washington, D.C. 20229.


Robert B. Swierupski
National Commodity

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