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May 28, 1999

CLA-2-95:RR:NC:2:224 E82487


TARIFF NO.: 9504.90.4000

Shelia Andrews
1600 Cantrell
Little Rock AR 72201

RE: The tariff classification of a computerized chess/checker game from China.

Dear Ms. Andrews:

In your letter of May 11, 1999, you requested a tariff classification ruling.

The game, identified as style 701E Ivan The Terrible, is an electronic chess and checker game with sound effects, multiple levels of play, LCD display and a talking mode that instructs beginners the fundamentals of chess. The sample will be returned at your request.

The applicable subheading for the Ivan The Terrible computerized chess/checker game will be 9504.90.4000, Harmonized Tariff Schedule of the United States (HTSUS), which provides for “Articles for arcade, table or parlor gamesOther: Game machines, other than coin- or token-operated; parts and accessories thereof.” The duty rate will be free.

You also request guidance on the country of origin marking of the sample game retail box. The marking “Made in China” is displayed on one side flap and on the back panel of the box containing the ivan the terrible computerized chess/checker game. There is a marking reference to the “U.S. CHESS Federation” clearly displayed on the bottom of the front panel of the box.

The marking statute, section 304, Tariff Act of 1930, as amended (19 U.S.C. 1304), provides that, unless excepted, every article of foreign origin (or its container) imported into the U.S. shall be marked in a conspicuous place as legibly, indelibly and permanently as the nature of the article (or its 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.

Section 134.46, Customs Regulations (19 CFR 134.46), requires that in any case in which the words "United States," or "American," the letters "U.S.A.," any variation of such words or letters, or the name of any city or locality in the United States, or the name of any foreign country or locality other than the country or locality in which the article was manufactured or produced, appears on an imported article or its container, there shall appear, legibly and permanently, in close proximity to such words, letters, or name, and in at least a comparable size, the name of the country of origin preceded by "Made in," Product of," or other words of similar meaning.

Customs has consistently held that in those cases in which a reference to a place other than the country of origin is made on an imported article, but such reference would not confuse the ultimate purchaser, the requirements of 19 CFR §134.46 are not triggered. In this case, it is difficult to believe any reasonable viewer will be confused as to the country of origin of the game. In our opinion, the ultimate purchaser will know that the phrase “U.S. Chess Federation” refers to the game’s governing body rather than where the game is created. We find that the name does not mislead or deceive the purchaser as to the actual country of origin and the requirements of 19 CFR §134.46 are not triggered by this statement. The existing marking of the country of origin is in conformance with section 304 of the Tariff Act (19 U.S.C 1304).

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 Tom McKenna at (212) 637-7015.


Robert B. Swierupski Director, National Commodity Specialist Division

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