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NY J87433

July 21, 2003

CLA-2-83:RR:NC:N1:113 J87433


TARIFF NO.: 8302.50.0000

Mr. Charles M. Watson
A.L. Swearer Co., Inc.
P.O. Box 471
Sewickley, PA 15143

RE: The tariff classification of a shopping bag hanger from Taiwan.

Dear Mr. Watson:

In your letter dated July 8, 2003, you requested a ruling on tariff classification.

The sample you provided is a handbag or shopping bag hanger. The hanger consists of a flat, round top about 3.5 cm in diameter. The top holds wire bent into a G-shaped hook with a small ball on the end. The article is made of gold-colored steel. The flat part will be placed on a table and a handbag will hang from the bottom loop.

The applicable subheading for this product will be 8302.50.0000, Harmonized Tariff Schedule of the United States (HTS), which provides for base metal hat-racks, hat pegs, brackets and similar fixtures. The general rate of duty will be free.

You also request a ruling on marking. The sample you supplied is not marked with the country of origin. You mention that you intend to place a sticker on the flat part of the holder. However, since you do not mention how the item is to be packaged, we cannot give a definite answer. We suggest you contact the local port for advice on proper marking. Below is some information regarding 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.

Presumably, marking the flat area with a sufficiently large sticker will be acceptable if the port director is satisfied that the marking will remain on the item until it reaches the ultimate purchaser. If the item is further packaged, the marking must remain visible. In addition, if the package has a reference to any locality other than the country of origin, then further marking is required.

Section 134.47, Customs Regulations (19 CFR 134.47), provides that when the name of a place other than the country of origin appears as part of a trademark or trade name or as part of a souvenir marking, the name of the actual country of origin must appear in close proximity to the place name "or in some other conspicuous location". Whether the country of origin appears "in close proximity" or in some other conspicuous place, the name of the country of origin must be preceded by "Made in," "Product of," or words of similar meaning. In other words, if the question concerns a trademark, trade name or souvenir marking, the country of origin marking need only meet the general standard of conspicuousness.

This ruling is being issued under the provisions of Part 177 of the Customs Regulations (19 C.F.R.).

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 James Smyth at 646-733-3018.


Robert B. Swierupski

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