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April 13, 1999

CLA-2-84:RR:NC:1:110 E80547


TARIFF NO.: 8471.90.0000

Mr. Patrick Pascarella
Viking Sea/Air Freight Inc.
181 S. Franklin Ave. Ste 607
Valley Stream, NY 11581

RE: The tariff classification of magnetic card readers from Japan.

Dear Mr. Pascarella:

In your letter dated April 8, 1999, on behalf of Sankyo Seiki (America) Inc., you requested a tariff classification ruling.

The merchandise under consideration involves various models of magnetic card readers that are primarily used with Automatic Teller Machines (ATM), cash dispensers, and other data processing equipment.

There are several different types of card readers but by and large, they can be defined as: 1) motorized, magnetic stripe readers; 2) motorized, magnetic stripe and IC type; 3) manual, magnetic stripe readers; 4) manual, magnetic stripe and IC readers. The model numbers would include the following: ICT 3Q5-3AO155; OQO series; MCM20 series; MCM-060 series; MCT-040 series; and the ICM-300 series.

The card readers are controlled by a host computer and are initially used to read data from a card that is introduced by the cardholder at the beginning of a transaction. These card readers are basically manual or motorized swipe type modules that read magnetically encoded data from magnetic stripes that conform to ISO standards. All of the models have RS232C or TTL interface capability, with the motorized versions incorporating a power supply. These magnetic stripe readers have applications with ATMs, cash dispensers, POS terminals, credit authorization terminals, gasoline pump dispensers, and security and access control terminals.

The magnetic card readers do not appear to be dedicated and principally used with automatic data processing machines, and would thus not meet the definition of a “unit” of an ADP system as per Legal Note 5 (B) to Chapter 84 of the HTS. These devices do however meet the part II definition under Heading 8471, as magnetic or optical readers. Note also NY ruling letter NY 815333 for similar merchandise.

The applicable subheading for the six models of magnetic card readers will be 8471.90.0000, Harmonized Tariff Schedule of the United States (HTS), which provides for magnetic or optical readers, machines for transcribing data onto data media in coded form and machines for processing such data, not elsewhere specified or included. The rate of duty will be free.

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 Art Brodbeck at 212-637-7019.


Robert B. Swierupski

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