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HQ 963512

July 3, 2002

CLA-2 RR:CR:TE 963512 RH


TARIFF NO.: 6109.90.8030

Mr. Albert Tang
Assistant Director-General
Hong Kong Economic and Trade Affairs
1520 18th Street, N.W.
Washington, D.C. 20036

RE: Request for Reconsideration of NY E84915, dated October 7, 1999; Tank Top; Metalized Yarn; Note 2(B)(a), Section XI, HTSUS

Dear Mr. Tang:

This is in reply to your letter of November 15, 1999, requesting reconsideration of New York Ruling Letter (NY) E84915, dated October 7, 1999, concerning the classification and quota category of a woman’s tank top (style number 22-9453).

In NY E84915, Customs classified the garment in question under subheading 6109.90.8030 of the Harmonized Tariff Schedule of the United States (HTSUS), which encompasses women’s knit tank tops of other textile materials, other.

We note that you do not contest classification of the garment as a tank top under heading 6109, HTSUS. Moreover, you do not contest Customs classification of the cardigan in NY E84915.


The garment is a knit tank top with ¼ inch shoulder straps, a shaped neckline in front and back and a tubular knit finish at the bottom.

A Customs laboratory examined the garment to verify the fiber content and yarn structure of the fabric and determined that the knitted fabric was composed of “a single 4-ply metallic yarn which consists of two single ply yarns of 100 percent acetate fibers which are twisted around a blended metallic yarn with a single ply of rayon fibers and a single ply of Mylar-type metallized yarn.” The laboratory further found that the overall fiber composition by weight was 75.1 percent acetate, 18.6 percent rayon and 6.3 percent metallic.

You argue that the garments are of chief weight “MMF” (man-made fiber) and that the correct category is 638/639, not category 838 as ruled by Customs. The corresponding tariff provision for category 638 is 6109.90.1013, HTSUS, covering women’s tank tops of man-made fibers. Category 639 is not applicable in this case as it corresponds to the tariff provision for men’s tank tops of man-made fibers.


What is the tariff classification and quota category for the women’s knit tank top?


The classification of goods under the HTSUS is governed by the General Rules of Interpretation (GRI's), taken in order. GRI 1 provides that classification shall be determined according to the terms of the headings and any relative section or chapter notes. In the event that the goods cannot be classified solely on the basis of GRI 1, and if the headings and legal notes do not otherwise require, the remaining GRI's may be applied, taken in order

When interpreting and implementing the HTSUS, the Explanatory Notes (ENs) of the Harmonized Commodity Description and Coding System may be utilized. The ENs, while neither legally binding nor dispositive, provide a guiding commentary on the scope of each heading, and are generally indicative of the proper interpretation of the HTSUS. Customs believes the ENs should always be consulted. See T.D. 89-90, 54 Fed. Reg. 35128 (August 23, 1989).

Heading 5605, HTSUS, provides for, inter alia, yarn consisting of metal plus any textile material, including strips, obtained by twisting, cabling or gimping, whatever the proportion of metal present.

The ENs to heading 5605 state, in pertinent part:

This heading covers:

Yarn consisting of any textile material (including monofilament, strip and the like and paper yarn) combined with metal thread or strip, whether obtained by a process of twisting, cabling or by gimping, whatever the proportion of metal present. . . .

Yarn of any textile material (including monofilament, strip and the like, and paper yarn) covered with metal by any process. This category includes yarn covered with metal by electro-deposition, or by giving it a coating of adhesive (e.g., gelatin) and then sprinkling it with metal powder (e.g., aluminum or bronze).

In the instant case, the metallic strip is twisted with the rayon to form a ply. Then, two of the plies are twisted with two plies of acetate to form a single yarn. Thus, the construction of the yarn is as delineated in EN (1) to heading 5605, HTSUS.

The appropriate fiber content of a garment, and one containing metallic yarn, requires consideration of Subheading Note 2(A) to Section XI, HTSUS, which provides in pertinent part:

Products of chapters 56 to 63 containing two or more textile materials are to be regarded as consisting wholly of that textile material which would be selected under note 2 to this section for the classification of a product of chapters 50 to 55 consisting of the same textile materials.

Legal Note 2(A) and 2(B)(a) to Section XI, HTSUS, state the following:

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 that occurs last in numerical order among those which equally merit consideration.

For the purposes of the above rule:

Gimped horsehair yarn (heading 5110) and metalized yarn (heading 5605) are to be treated as a single textile material the weight of which is to be taken as the aggregate of the weights of its components. . . . .

In the instant case, the metalized yarn is treated as a single textile material, pursuant to Legal Note 2(B)(a) to Section XI, HTSUS. Furthermore, Legal Note 8(b) to Section XI, HTSUS, states that "[c]hapters 50 to 55 do not apply to goods of chapters 56 to 59." Therefore, since metallic yarns are classified in chapter 56, HTSUS, neither those yarns nor fabric made from them are classified in chapters 54 or 55 as man-made fiber fabrics. See, Headquarters Ruling Letter (HQ) 963117, dated December 6, 1999, and HQ 954073, September 23, 1999.

Accordingly, we find that the tank top was correctly classified in NY E84915 under subheading 6109.90.8030, HTSUS.


NY E84915 is AFFIRMED. The tank top at issue is classified under subheading 6109.90.8030, HTSUS, which provides for “T-shirts, singlets, tank tops and similar garments, knitted or crocheted: Of other textile materials: Other: Women’s or girls’: Other.” The general column one rate of duty is 16.2 percent ad valorem and the textile category is 838.

The designated textile and apparel categories may be subdivided into parts. If so, the visa and quota requirements applicable to the subject merchandise may be affected. Since part categories are the result of international bilateral agreements which are subject to frequent renegotiations and changes, to obtain the most current information available we suggest the importer check, close to the time of shipment, the Status Report on current Import Quotas (Restraint Levels), an internal issuance of the U.S. Customs Service which is updated weekly and is available for inspection at your local Customs office.

Due to the changeable nature of the statistical annotation (the ninth and tenth digits of the classification) and the restraint (quota/visa) categories, you should
contact your local Customs office prior to importation of this merchandise to determine the current status of any import restraints or requirements.


John E. Elkins, Chief
Textiles Classification Branch

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