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July 8, 1999

CLA-2-29:RR:NC:2:238 E83902


TARIFF NO.: 2933.59.4500

William Cain, Ph.D.
S.S.T. Corporation
635 Brighton Road
P.O. Box 1649
Clifton, NJ 07015-1649

RE: The tariff classification of Trazodone Hydrochloride (CAS RN 25332-39-2), imported in bulk form, from Finland

Dear Dr. Cain:

In your letter dated June 18, 1999, you requested a tariff classification ruling.

The subject product, Trazodone Hydrochloride, is indicated for the treatment of depression. Chemically, it is designated as 2-[3-[4-(3-chlorophenyl)-1-piperazinyl]propyl]-1,2,4-triazolo[4,3-a]pyridin-3(2H)-one.

According to its structural formula, Trazodone Hydrochloride contains an (unfused) piperazine ring, in addition to a five-membered heterocyclic ring (with three nitrogen hetero-atoms) fused to a (partially hydrogenated) pyridine ring. Therefore, since Trazodone Hydrochloride is a heterocyclic compound with nitrogen hetero-atoms only, it is properly classifiable - at the heading level - within heading 2933, HTS, which provides for “[H]eterocyclic compounds with nitrogen hetero-atom(s) only:. “

With respect to classification at the six-digit subheading level, we note that, of the three heterocyclic rings present in Trazodone Hydrochloride, only the piperazine ring is actually specified in the six-digit structure to heading 2933, HTS (namely, subheading 2933.59, HTS); the other two heterocyclic rings are not.

Although you assert in your letter that Trazodone Hydrochloride “[i]s better classified” under subheading 2933.90, HTS, it is our determination, based on the rationale set forth in HQ 954922, dated June 21, 1995, that Trazodone Hydrochloride is precluded from any other subheading – including subheading 2933.90, HTS - because we regard subheading 2933.90, HTS, as including only those heterocyclic compounds that do not contain one of the ring systems specified in the prior subheadings (e.g., 2933.59, HTS). Furthermore, we note that Customs (presumably based on the principles expounded upon in HQ 954922), in HQ 957956, dated January 25, 1996, ruled that Trazodone Hydrochloride was, in fact, properly classifiable – at the six-digit subheading level - within subheading 2933.59, HTS (2933.59.4500, HTS, at the ten-digit level), and not within subheading 2933.90, HTS (2933.90.6100, HTS, at the ten-digit level). Finally, as addressed in HQ 954922, Chapter 29, Note 3 would not apply because, like the product ruled upon in HQ 954922, Trazodone Hydrochloride is not classifiable in more than one subheading in Chapter 29.

The applicable subheading for Trazodone Hydrochloride, imported in bulk form, will be 2933.59.4500, Harmonized Tariff Schedule of the United States (HTS), which provides for “[H]eterocyclic compounds with nitrogen hetero-atom(s) only: Compounds containing a pyrimidine ring (whether or not hydrogenated) or piperazine ring in the structure: Other: Drugs: Aromatic or modified aromatic: Antidepressants, tranquilizers and other psychotherapeutic agents. Pursuant to General Note 13, HTS, the rate of duty will be free.

This merchandise may be subject to the requirements of the Federal Food, Drug, and Cosmetic Act, which is administered by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration. You may contact them at 5600 Fishers Lane, Rockville, Maryland 20857, telephone number 301-443-1544.

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 Harvey Kuperstein at 212-637-7068.


Robert B. Swierupski

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