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NY I85601

September 10, 2002

CLA-2-85:RR:NC:1:108 I85601


TARIFF NO.: 8525.40.4000

Ms. Valerie M. Suchor
Spectra Merchandising Int’l, Inc.
4230 North Normandy Avenue
Chicago, Illinois 60634

RE: The tariff classification of digital cameras from Hong Kong.

Dear Ms. Suchor:

In your letter dated August 22, 2002 you requested a tariff classification ruling.

The items in question are digital cameras that function as both a live web cam and as a still image camera with storage capability. They are denoted as the Polaroid PDC 330 model and the Cool-i-Cam CIC-200 model. Each particular model is packaged for retail sale (sample submitted). The Polaroid PDC 330 model is packaged with batteries, a USB cable, camera case and wrist strap and CD-ROM software. The Cool-i-Cam model CIC-200 is packaged with batteries, a USB cable, camera stand, camera case and wrist strap and CD-ROM software.

Explanatory Note X to GRI 3b provides for the purpose of this rule, the term “goods put up in sets for retail sale” shall be taken to mean goods which:

A. Consist of at least two different articles which are, prima facie, classifiable in different headings.

B. Consist of products put up together to meet a particular need or carry out a specific activity; and

C. Are put up in a manner suitable for sale to users without repackaging (e.g. in boxes or cases or on boards).

All the aforementioned articles, configured in each particular model set, are prima facie classifiable in different headings. Together each enables the user to fully operate the particular digital camera. Based upon the provided packaging it is evident that the configured goods will not be repackaged after importation. Therefore it is the opinion of this office that each configuration constitutes a set in accordance with Explanatory Note X.

In accordance, in part, with GRI 3b goods put up in sets for retail sale, which cannot be classified by reference to GRI 3a, shall be classified as if they consisted of the material or component which gives them their essential character.

EN VIII to GRI 3b states that the factor, which determines essential character, will vary as between different kinds of goods. It may for example, be determined by the nature of the material or component, its bulk, quantity, weight or value, or by the role of the constituent material in relation to the goods.

It is the opinion of this office that the item which imparts the essential character to each particular set is the digital camera. It is clearly the reason why one would buy the set and each camera clearly dominates their particular set in terms of value and function.

GRI 2b states that if a product is a mixture or combination of materials or substance that are, prima facie, classifiable in two or more headings, then GRI b applies. This office is of the opinion that each digital camera is a composite good because each are capable of capturing and transmitting live action in real time (web cam capability) and can take and store digital still images (digital still image capability). They will therefore be classified in accordance with GRI 3.

GRI 3b provides that mixtures, composite goods consisting of different components, shall be classified as if they consisted of the material component, which gives them their essential character.

Based upon the facts that each camera has a dual function, whereby the user has a choice of operation, and that each camera is marketed as multi-purpose, neither of the functions imparts an essential character. Therefore classification will be in accordance with GRI 3c which states when goods cannot be classified by reference to 3a or 3b; they shall be classified under the heading which occurs last in numerical order among those which merit equal consideration.

Legal Note 6 to Chapter 85 will not be applied to the CD-ROM software program, of each particular set. Each CD-ROM software program (recorded media) will be classified in accordance with Section XVI, Chapter 85, General Note B1 because the recorded media is presented with apparatus for which it is not-intended and the items presented are classified as sets.

The applicable subheading for the Polaroid PDC 330 digital camera set and the Cool-I-Cam CIC-200 digital camera set will be 8525.40.4000, Harmonized Tariff Schedule of the United States (HTS), which provides for Transmission apparatus for radiotelephony, radiotelegraphy, radiobroadcasting or television, whether or not incorporating reception apparatus or sound recording or reproducing apparatus; television cameras; still image video cameras or other video camera recorders; digital cameras: Still image video cameras and other video camera recorders; digital cameras: Digital still image video cameras. The rate of duty will be free.

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 Michael Contino at 646-733-3014.


Robert B. Swierupski

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