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NY G80233

August 9, 2000

CLA-2-64: FO:NP:POR:TC:D28 G80233


TARIFF NO.: 6405.90.9000; 6403.19.2000

Mr. Stephen Coffey
A.H. Carter & Associates
801 SW 16TH Street, Suite 107
Renton, Washington 98055

RE: The tariff classification of footwear from China and Japan

Dear Mr. Coffey:

In your letter dated July 20, 2000, you requested a tariff classification ruling on behalf of Simms Fishing Products, Inc.

Three sample boots were submitted for examination, the River Boot, the Aquastealth Guide Boot and the Rubber Wading Boot. All three are wading boots designed to provide increased traction and safety when wading in slippery water conditions. Only the Rubber Wading Boot is designed to protect against penetration by water.

The River Boot has an outer sole of felt. Stream fishermen routinely use wading boots with felt soles because felt is not slippery on wet rocks. The material of the upper having the greatest external surface area is rubber/plastics. The applicable subheading for this boot will be 6405.90.9000, Harmonized Tariff Schedule of the United States (HTS), which provides for “Other footwear: Other: Other.” The rate of duty will be 12.5%. We note that the sample is marked “Leather Upper”. However, the upper material is not leather, but rather an imitation leather composed of a non-woven textile substrate with a .5mm polyurethane coating. The sample is also marked “Made in Taiwan”. However, in a phone conversation on August 8, 2000, you indicated that the country of origin will be China. Of course, accurate country of origin marking is required on all imports.

The Aquastealth Guide Boot has an outer sole of rubber/plastics with metal studs (spikes) for traction. It is designed for use by fishermen and provides grip on slick stream bottoms. The upper’s external surface area is predominately leather. The Aquastealth Guide Boot is constructed with a welt which extends around the edge of the tread portion of the sole, and in which the welt and shoe upper are sewed to a lip on the surface of the insole, and the outsole of which is sewed to the welt. The applicable subheading for this boot will be 6403.19.2000, Harmonized Tariff Schedule of the United States (HTS), which provides for “Footwear with outer soles of rubber, plastics, leather or composition leather and uppers of leather: Sports footwear: Other: For men, youths and boys: Welt footwear: Other.” The rate of duty is Free. Please note that the term ‘footwear for men, youths and boys” covers footwear of American youths’ size 11 ½ and larger for males, and does not include footwear commonly worn by both sexes.

The Wading Boot is an unfinished boot. After importation, waist-high or chest-high waterproof Goretex “pants” or “overalls”are glued to the top of the Wading Boot shaft. Although not complete at the time of importation, the Wading Boot provides a total covering for the foot. It has felt soles. The exterior surface area of the upper is 100% natural rubber. The upper extends to mid-calf. In its condition as imported, the unfinished Wading Boot has the essential character of footwear, i.e., having both soles and uppers as provided for by the terms of headings 6401 through 6405, HTSUSA. The applicable subheading for this unfinished boot will be 6405.90.9000, Harmonized Tariff Schedule of the United States (HTS), which provides for “Other footwear: Other: Other.” The rate of duty will be 12.5%.

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.


Lewellyn Robison
Port Director

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