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HQ 964887

November 16, 2001

CLA-2 RR: CR: GC 964887 TPB


TARIFF NO.: 8529.90.99

Mr. Eric R. Rock
Nippon Express U.S.A., Inc.
11417 Irving Park Road
Franklin Park, IL 60131

RE: Organic Electro-Luminescent Display Module; Revocation of NY F82153

Dear Mr. Rock:

In NY F82153, which the Director of Customs National Commodity Specialist Division, New York, issued to you on February 16, 2000, organic electro-luminescent ("OEL") display modules were held to be classified under subheading 8531.80.9025, Harmonized Tariff Schedule of the United States, ("HTSUS"), which provides for other electric sound or visual signaling apparatus, other apparatus, other, indicator panels, other.

Pursuant to 625 (c), Tariff Act of 1930 (19 U.S.C. 1625 (c)), as amended by section 623 of Title VI (Customs Modernization) of the North American Free Trade Agreement Implementation Act, Pub. L. 103-182, 107 Stat. 2057, 2186 (1993), notice of the proposed revocation of NY F82153 was published on October 3, 2001, in the CUSTOMS BULLETIN, Volume 35, Number 40. No comments were received in response to that notice.


The OEL display module consists of a 96 x 32 pixel graphic dot matrix, electro-luminescent display that has been attached to a printed circuit assembly ("PCA"). The PCA includes anode and cathode drivers, mylar "dome pad" depression switches, and a flexible connector. This module will be incorporated into a cellular mobile phone and will provide touch pad display of all relevant call data.


What is the proper classification of the organic electro-luminescent display modules?


Classification under the HTSUS is made in accordance with the General Rules of Interpretation ("GRIs"). GRI 1 provides that the classification of goods shall be determined according to the terms of the headings of the tariff schedule 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 GRIs may then be applied.

The Harmonized Commodity Description and Coding System Explanatory Notes ("ENs") constitute the official interpretation of the Harmonized System at the international level. While neither legally binding nor dispositive, the ENs provide a commentary on the scope of each heading of the HTSUS and are generally indicative of the proper interpretation of these headings. See T.D. 89-80.

The HTSUS provisions under consideration are as follows:

8529 Parts suitable for use solely or principally with the apparatus of headings 8525 to 8528:

8529.90 Other:


8529.90.99 Other.

8531 Electric sound or visual signaling apparatus (for example, bells, sirens, indicator panels, burglar or fire alarms), other than those of heading 8512 or 8530; parts thereof:

8531.80 Other apparatus:

8531.80.90 Other:

Indicator panels:

8531.80.9025 Other.

To determine whether or not an article is a "part," we must ascertain if that article is necessary to the completion of the article with which it is used, that is, if it is an integral constituent or component part without which the parent article cannot function as that article. Clipper Belt Lacer Co., Inc. v. United States, 738 F.Supp. 528 (CIT 1990).

Section XVI, note 2, HTSUS, provides, in pertinent part, as follows:

(a) ....

(b) Other parts, if suitable for use solely or principally with a particular kind of machine, or with a number of machines of the same heading (including a machine of heading 8479 or 8543) are to be classified with the machines of that kind or in heading 8409, 8431, 8448, 8466, 8473, 8503, 8522, 8529 or 8538 as appropriate....

(c) ....

You have provided documentation that shows that in addition to the display itself, these modules contain anode and cathode drivers, mylar "dome pad" depression switches and a flexible connector which are critical components for the operation of a cellular telephone. With these components, the module is beyond the scope of visual signaling apparatus of heading 8531, HTSUS.

These display modules are integral component parts without which cellular telephones, classifiable under heading 8525, HTSUS, that they are intended for could not function. Therefore, they are classifiable under subheading 8529.90.99, HTSUS. This ruling is consistent with a previous Headquarters Ruling on similar merchandise (See HQ 960873, dated November 12, 1997).


For the reasons stated above, the electro-luminescent (OEL) display module is to be classified under subheading 8529.90.99, HTSUS, as: "Parts suitable for use solely or principally with the apparatus of headings 8525 to 8528: Other apparatus: Other: Other."


NY F82153, dated February 16, 2000, is revoked. In accordance with 19 U.S.C. 1625 (c), this ruling will become effective 60 days after its publication in the CUSTOMS BULLETIN.


John Durant, Director

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