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NY H81755

June 28, 2001

CLA-2-62:RR:NC:TA:360 H81755


TARIFF NO.: 6208.92.0010

Jeffrey M. Marcus
Leisure Life Industries, Inc.
152 Madison Avenue
10th Floor
New York, NY 10016

RE: The tariff classification and status under the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA), of women’s robes from Mexico; Article 509

Dear Mr. Marcus:

In your letter dated May 31, 2001 you requested a ruling on the status of women’s robes from Mexico under the NAFTA.

The submitted garment, style 968325, is a women’s robe made from woven tufted fabric, which consists of 50% cotton and 50% polyester yarns tufted into a 100% cotton base fabric. The garment extends from the shoulders to approximately the mid-calf and features long sleeves; a full front opening secured by seven buttons and side seam pockets.

Section XI, subheading note 2 (B) (b) to the Harmonized Tariff Schedule of the United States (HTS) states:

In the case of textile products consisting of a ground fabric and a pile or looped surface no account shall be taken of the ground fabric.

Therefore, by application of this rule, the robe would be classified under the subheading for robes made from the tufted fabric, a 50% cotton/50% polyester blend. According to Section XI, note 2 (A):

Goods classifiable in chapters 50 to 55 or in heading 5809 or 5902 and of a mixture of two or more textile materials are to be classified as if consisting wholly of that one textile material which predominates by weight over each other single textile material.

When no one textile material predominates by weight, the goods are to be classified as if consisting wholly of that one textile material which is covered by the heading which occurs last in numerical order among those which equally merit consideration.

In this case, the heading that appears last is the heading for robes of man-made fibers.

Garments that are claimed to be constructed from such a blend are subject, upon importation, to laboratory analysis by the U.S. Customs Service to verify the actual weight of the component fibers. Please be advised that a slight variation, from the above stated fiber content, may affect the classification and the textile category designation of the subject garment.

The applicable tariff provision for style 968325 will be 6208.92.0010, Harmonized Tariff Schedule of the United States Annotated (HTSUSA), which provides for women’s robes of man-made fibers. The general rate of duty will be 16.3 percent ad valorem.

Style 968325 falls within textile category designation 650. Based upon international textile trade agreements products of Mexico are not subject to quota and the requirement of a visa.

The designated textile and apparel categories and their quota and visa status are the result of international agreements that are subject to frequent renegotiations and changes. To obtain the most current information, we suggest that you check, close to the time of shipment, the U.S. Customs Service Textile Status Report, an internal issuance of the U.S. Customs Service, which is available at the Customs Web Site at WWW.CUSTOMS.GOV. In addition, the designated textile and apparel categories may be subdivided into parts. If so, visa and quota requirements applicable to the subject merchandise may be affected and should also be verified at the time of shipment.

The tufted fabric is made from 100% cotton sheeting made in Pakistan and yarn from the United States. At your factory in Tennessee, the imported sheeting is wound over a frame and the yarn is fed into the sheeting by needles after working its way through the tubes that are attached to the spools of yarn. Knives then cut the yarn to a specific height. After the fabric is made, it is dyed and finished in the U.S. The tufted fabric is shipped to Mexico to be cut and assembled into women’s robes.

General Note 12(t)/62.32 to the Harmonized Tariff Schedule of the United States Annotated (HTSUSA), the rule covering this merchandise, states:

A change to headings 6206 through 6210 from any other chapter, except from headings 5106 through 5113, 5204 through 5212, 5307 through 5308 or 5310 through 5311, chapter 54, or headings 5508 through 5516, 5801 through 5802 or 6001 through 6002, provided that the good is both cut and sewn or otherwise assembled in the territory of one or more of the NAFTA parties.

The cotton fabric imported from Pakistan is classified in heading 5208, therefore the robe does not meet the change in tariff classification required by General Note 12(t)/62.32, HTSUSA. Thus the robe does not qualify for preferential treatment under this rule.

In addition, the merchandise does not qualify for preferential treatment under the NAFTA because the robe will not be made exclusively from originating materials. The fabric imported from Pakistan, after being tufted in the United States would be classified under HTSUSA heading 5802. For that fabric to be considered originating, it would have to meet the tariff change required for that heading, as follows:

Chapter 58. A change to headings 5801 through 5811 from any other chapter, except from headings 5106 through 5113, 5204 through 5212, 5307 through 5308 or 5310 through 5311, or chapters 54 through 55.

Since the fabric from Pakistan is classified in heading 5208, the tufted fabric does not meet the above requirement. Therefore, the end product is not considered to be made exclusively from originating materials.

You indicated in your request that you believe the item may qualify as NAFTA originating under Mexican Special Regime. A garment qualifying for consideration under Special Regime would be classified under HTSUSA 9802.00.9000, which states:

Textile and apparel goods, assembled in Mexico in which all fabric components were wholly formed and cut in the United States

Since the fabric for the robes is neither wholly formed nor cut in the United States, the garment would not qualify under Mexican Special Regime.

However, the robe may be subject to a reduced rate of duty based upon the Tariff Preference Levels (TPL) established in Section XI, Additional U.S. Note 3(a), up to the annual quantities specified in subdivision (g)(i) of Note 3. Upon completion of the required documentation and up to the specified annual quantities, the robe may be eligible for the preferential rate which is “Free.”

This ruling is being issued under the provisions of Part 181 of the Customs Regulations (19 C.F.R. 181).

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 Patricia Schiazzano at 212-637-7080.

Should you wish to request an administrative review of this ruling, submit a copy of this ruling and all relevant facts and arguments within 30 days of the date of this letter, to the Director, Commercial Rulings Division, Headquarters, U.S. Customs Service, 1300 Pennsylvania Ave. N.W., Washington, D.C. 20229.


Robert B. Swierupski

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