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NY K84745

May 5, 2004
CLA-2-44:RR:NC:2:230 K84745


TARIFF NO.: 4421.90.9740

Mr. Larry Chance
Jean D. Duncan Customs Brokers, Inc.
P.O. Box 20696
Atlanta Airport
Atlanta, GA 30320

RE: The tariff classification of wood picture frame moldings from Taiwan

Dear Mr. Chance:

In your letter dated March 31, 2004, on behalf of the importer, Nurre Caxton, you requested a tariff classification ruling.

The ruling was requested on various picture frame moldings from Pan-Works Enterprise Co. Ltd. in Taiwan. The moldings will be imported finished and in eight to ten foot lengths. Representative sample pieces of 32 different profiles of moldings were submitted. The manufacturing process of the moldings is described by the importer in a separate letter, which you included and referred to.

The basic manufacturing process is described as follows: inspection of the jelutong wood, profile milling by machine, filling holes by hand, application of gesso (5 to 6 times) by machine, hand sanding, cleaning, painting by machine, inspection, machine sizing, adding gold or silver leaf by hand, machine burnishing, cross hatching, machine shellac coating (2 times), machine varnishing, machine shellac coating, inspection, and packaging.

Five of the samples submitted were examined. The five styles examined are # 31212, # 63401, # 73504, # 74232, and # 91002. They consist of solid wood moldings having five different profiles and finishes. All of the styles have an application of gesso on at least one surface. Style # 63401 and style # 31212 have additional sections of gesso built up into low relief and that are embossed with a repetitive pattern. Style # 73504 is painted black and lacquered. The other styles are covered with gold or silver leaf or a combination of both. Style # 74232 has a layer of gesso topped with silver leaf on one surface and two striated or cross-hatched wood surfaces.

The importer believes that the subject moldings should be classified under subheadings 4409.20.4000 or 4409.20.5000, Harmonized Tariff Schedule of the United States Annotated (HTSUSA) which provide for wood continuously shaped along any of its edges, ends or faces, - standard wood moldings and other wood moldings. Alternatively, the importer believes the subject moldings should be classified in subheading 4407.24.0095, HTSUSA, which provides for wood sawn or chipped lengthwise, sliced or peeled, whether or not planed, sanded or end-jointed, of certain tropical wood species.

Classification of goods in the Harmonized Tariff Schedule of the United States is governed by the General Rules of Interpretation (GRI’s). GRI 1 provides that classification shall first be determined according to the terms of the headings and any relative section or chapter notes. The Explanatory Notes to the Harmonized Commodity Description and Coding System (EN) provide a commentary on the scope of each heading.

Heading 4407 provides for wood sawn or chipped lengthwise, sliced or peeled, whether or not planed, sanded or end-jointed. The EN to heading 4407 state that this heading excludes wood continuously shaped along any of its edges or faces.

Heading 4409 provides for wood continuously shaped along any of its edges, ends or faces, whether or not planed, sanded or end-jointed. The EN to heading 4409 state that this heading excludes wood which has been surface worked beyond planing or sanding, other than painting, staining or varnishing. As examples, the EN lists wood which has been veneered, polished, bronzed, or faced with metal leaf as being worked beyond the scope of heading 4409 and indicates that these are generally provided for in heading 4421.

The subject wood picture frame moldings have been surface worked beyond the scope of headings 4409 or 4407. They have been layered with gesso, faced with metal leaf and/or coated with shellac. These are processes that are beyond planing or sanding and beyond any treatment that may be considered necessary for preservation, such as painting, staining or varnishing.

The applicable subheading for the picture frame moldings described above will be 4421.90.9740, HTSUSA, which provides for other articles of wood. The rate of duty will be 3.3 percent ad valorem.

The holding set forth above applies only to the specific factual situation and merchandise description as identified in the ruling request. This position is clearly set forth in 19 CFR 177.9(b)(1). This section states that a ruling letter is issued on the assumption that all of the information furnished in the ruling letter, either directly, by reference, or by implication, is accurate and complete in every material respect.

This ruling is being issued under the assumption that the subject goods, in their condition as imported into the United States, conform to the facts and the description as set forth both in the ruling request and in this ruling. In the event that the facts or merchandise are modified in any way, you should bring this to the attention of Customs and you should resubmit for a new ruling in accordance with 19 CFR 177.2. You should also be aware that the material facts described in the foregoing ruling may be subject to periodic verification by the Customs Service.

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 Paul Garretto at 646-733-3035.


Robert B. Swierupski

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