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September 1, 1999

CLA-2-95:RR:NC:2:224 E86255
CATEGORY: CLASSIFICATION

TARIFF NO.: 9507.10.0040; 9507.30; 9507.20.4000; 9507.90.7000; 9507.90.8000; 6307.90.8940Gordon C. Anderson

C.H. Robinson International, Inc.
8100 Mitchell Road
Eden Prairie MN 55344-2231

RE: The tariff classification of a fishing kit from China

Dear Mr. Anderson:

In your letter dated August 17, 1999, you requested a tariff classification ruling on behalf of USA Guangwei Fishing Tackle, Houston, Texas.

The article under consideration is a ZEBCO® adventure Tackle Pack. The pack consists of a spinning reel pre-spooled with 6lb line, a fiberglass fishing rod and an assortment of tackle items including bobbers, hooks, swivels, jigs, sinkers and spinners. An 11-inch by 16-inch cotton towel is included in the pack. The ZEBCO® adventure Tackle Pack will be packaged ready for retail sale at the time it enters the U.S. The sample will be returned as requested.

Classification of merchandise under the Harmonized Tariff Schedule of the United States (HTSUS) is in accordance with the General Rules of Interpretation (GRIs), taken in order. GRI 1 provides that classification is determined according to the terms of the headings and any relative section or chapter notes. However, GRI 3 must be considered in the classification of merchandise put up in sets for retail sale.

GRI 3(b) provides that:

[m]ixtures, composites goods consisting of different materials or different components, and goods put up in sets for retail sale, 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 understanding the language of GRI 3(b), the Harmonized Commodity Description and Coding System Explanatory Notes may be utilized. The Explanatory Notes, although not dispositive, are to be used to determine the proper interpretation of the HTSUS.

Explanatory Note 3(b)(x), HTSUS, provides that “[f]or the purpose of this Rule, the term ‘goods put up in sets for retail sale’ shall be taken to mean goods which:

(a) consist of at least two different articles which are, prima facie, classifiable in different headings;

(b) consist of products or articles put up together to meet a particular need or carry out a specific activity; and

(c) are put up in a manner suitable for sale directly to users without repacking.”

The instant fishing tackle pack does not meet the criteria for treatment as a set under GRI 3 analysis. The articles in the kit “consist of at least two different articles which are, prima facie, classifiable in different headings” and the kit is “put up in a manner suitable for sale directly to users without repacking.” However, the kit does not “consist of products or articles put up together to meet a particular need or carry out one specific activity.” Because of the presence of the towel, the tackle pack components do meet more than one particular need or carry out more than one specific activity and thus fail as a set under GRI 3, HTSUS. Under GRI 1, all of the articles contained within the ZEBCO® adventure Tackle Pack must be classified separately under their respective headings in the HTSUS. See Customs ruling letter NY E84040 dated July 08, 1999.

The applicable subheading for the fishing rod will be 9507.10.0040, HTSUS, the provision for fishing rods and parts and accessories thereof. The rate of duty will be 6 percent ad valorem.

The subheading for the reel is dependent on its unit value. Your letter indicates the cost of the subject reel itself is $1.30 per unit. Accordingly, it is classified in subheading 9507.30.2000, HTSUS, the provision for fishing reels valued not over $2.70 each. The duty rate is 9.2 percent ad valorem.

The subheading for the hooks will be 9507.20.4000, HTSUS, the provision for fishhooks, whether or not snelled. The rate of duty will be 4 percent ad valorem.

The subheading for the lures will be 9507.90.7000, HTSUS, the provision for artificial baits and flies. The duty rate will be 9 percent ad valorem.

The subheading for the remainder of the fishing tackle including the bobbers and swivels will be 9507.90.8000, HTSUS, the provision for other line fishing tackle. The duty rate will be 9 percent ad valorem.

The towel is described as a promotional cotton terry cloth fishing towel valued at $0.41 cents. It carries the company name and the slogan “Let’s Go Fishing.” The applicable subheading for the cotton hand towel will be 6307.90.8940, HTSUS, the provision for other made up articlescotton towels of pile or tufted construction. The duty rate will be 7 percent ad valorem. See Customs ruling NY C81958 dated December 16, 1997.

The towel falls within textile category designation 363. Based upon international textile trade agreements products of this category from China are subject to quota and the requirements of a visa.

This ruling is being issued under the provisions of Section 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 (212) 637-7011.

Sincerely,

Robert B. Swierupski
Director,
National Commodity

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