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NY G85074

December 29, 2000

CLA-2-64:RR:NC:TP:347 G85074


TARIFF NO.: 6405.20.30

Mr. Arlen T. Epstein
Tompkins & Davidson, LLP
One Astor Plaza
1515 Broadway
New York, N.Y. 10036-8901

RE: The tariff classification of women’s footwear and a carrying bag from China.

Dear Mr. Epstein:

In your letter dated November 30, 2000, written on behalf of your client, Avon Products, Inc., you requested a tariff classification ruling.

You have submitted a sample of what you state are a pair of women’s closed toe, open back slippers, “Rosebud Terrycloth Slippers in a Bag,” #PP21878. You state that the footwear is constructed with an upper of 80% cotton and 20% polyester “terrycloth” material. You also state that the footwear uppers feature satin piping constructed of 100% rayon and is trimmed with depictions of roses and leaves also constructed of 100% rayon. You state that the outer sole is made of 100% cotton which features protruding rubber/plastic traction dots measuring approximately 3/32 inches in diameter and spaced on average approximately 3/32 to 1/8 of an inch from one another with an average of six traction dots to one inch. Visual examination indicates that the external surface area of the outer sole (ESAS) is predominated by the textile material. Therefore, the constituent material of the outer sole for this shoe is considered to be textile.

The shoes will be imported and sold in a zippered carrying bag that is the same color as the slippers and constructed of polyvinyl chloride (PVC) and is shaped and sized to accommodate the pair of slippers. The bag is opened using a slide fastener running across the top of the bag. The bag itself measures about 12 inches in length and about 4-1/2 inches in height, and features two carrying handles extending about five inches from either side of the carrying bag.

The Explanatory Notes (EN) to the Harmonized Tariff Schedule of the United States (HTSUSA) constitute the official interpretation of the tariff at the international level. The Explanatory Notes to GRI (General Rules of Interpretation) 3(b) provides further guidance in determining essential character, and in determining what constitutes a “set.” The Explanatory Notes for GRI 3(b) define sets as (1) consisting of at least two different articles which are classifiable in different headings, (2) articles put together to meet a particular need or carry out a specific activity, (3) packed for sale directly to users without repacking. In the examples of sets in EN (X) to GRI 3(b), holders, cases, containers, etc. may be included as components of sets. Holders, cases, etc. imported with a set should be designed to hold or carry the items which are a part of the set. Here the bag functions to provide storage for the footwear when it is not being used. If imported and presented with the shoes ready for sale without repacking, the pair of shoes and bag meets the definition of a “set” for Customs purposes. Sets are classified according to the component that gives them their essential character. Accordingly, the shoes, packed and sold with the accompanying bag forms a set, with the shoes imparting the essential character.

The applicable subheading for the footwear with a specially shaped and fitted carrying bag will be 6405.20.30, Harmonized Tariff Schedule of the United States (HTS), which provides for footwear in which the sole’s external surface is predominately other than rubber, plastics, leather or composition leather, in which the upper’s external surface is predominately textile materials, in which there is a line of demarcation between the sole and the upper, and in which the upper, by weight, predominately consists of vegetable fibers such as cotton or flax (lining, accessories and reinforcements not included). The rate of duty will be 7.5% ad valorem.

We also note that the submitted samples are not marked with the country of origin. Therefore, if imported as is, the samples submitted will not meet the country of origin marking requirement of 19 U.S.C. 1304. Accordingly, the shoes would be considered not legally marked under the provisions of 19 C.F.R 134.11 which states “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 container) will permit.”

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 Richard Foley at 212-637-7089.


Robert B. Swierupski

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