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NY H89271

March 28, 2002

MAR-2 RR:NC:2:227 H89271


Mr. Martin Bloch
Dell Will Customs Brokers (USA) Inc.
26395 Northline Commerce Drive, Suite 600 Taylor, Michigan 48180


Dear Bloch:

This is in response to your letter dated February 26, 2002, on behalf of Marck & Associates, requesting a ruling on whether the proposed marking "China" is an acceptable country of origin marking for imported glazed ceramic mugs that will be further processed in the United States. A marked sample was not submitted with your letter for review.

You state that Marck & Associates imports into the U.S. glazed ceramic mugs with a decal on the bottom of the mugs. Marck sells the mugs to their U.S. customers packed in boxes marked “Made in China”. The U.S. customers further process the mugs by transferring the designs to the glazed ceramic mugs via application of the decals and kiln firing, a process known as “decalcomania”.

Marck inquires whether, before importation into the U.S., embossing along the edge of the bottom of each mug with “China” is an acceptable country of origin marking.

The marking statute, section 304, Tariff Act of 1930, as amended (19 U.S.C. 1304), provides that, unless excepted, 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 its container) will permit, in such a manner as to indicate to the ultimate purchaser in the U.S. the English name of the country of origin of the article.

As provided in section 134.41(b), Customs Regulations (19 CFR 134.41(b)), the country of origin marking is considered conspicuous if the ultimate purchaser in the U.S. is able to find the marking easily and read it without strain.

With regard to the permanency of a marking, section 134.41(a), Customs Regulations (19 CFR 134.41(a)), provides that as a general rule marking requirements are best met by marking worked into the article at the time of manufacture. For example, it is suggested that the country of origin on metal articles be die sunk, molded in, or etched. However, section 134.44, Customs Regulations (19 CFR 134.44), generally provides that any marking that is sufficiently permanent so that it will remain on the article until it reaches the ultimate purchaser unless deliberately removed is acceptable.

Section 134.46, Customs Regulations (19 CFR 134.46), deals with cases in which the words “United States,” or “American,” the letters “U.S.A.,” any variations of such words or letters, or the name of any city or locality in the United States, or the name of any foreign country or locality other than the country or locality in which the article was manufactured or produced, appears on an imported article or its container, and those words, letters or names may mislead or deceive the ultimate purchaser as to the actual country of origin. In such a case, there shall appear, legibly and permanently, in close proximity to such words, letters, or name, and in at least a comparable size, the name of the country of origin preceded by “Made in,” Product of,” or other words of similar meaning.

The proposed marking of imported glazed ceramic mugs, as described above, is conspicuously, legibly and permanently marked in satisfaction of the marking requirements of 19 U.S.C. 1304 and 19 CFR Part 134 and is an acceptable country of origin marking for the imported glazed ceramic mugs.

This ruling is being issued under the provisions of Part 177 of the Customs Regulations (19 CFR Part 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 George Kalkines at 646-733-3028.


Robert B. Swierupski

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