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NY K85876

May 26, 2004
CLA-2-84:RR:NC:1:110 K85876


TARIFF NO.: 8472.90.9080

Ms. Joanne Harmon
Ms. Cheryl Santos
One CVS Drive
Woonsocket, RI 02895

RE: The tariff classification of a 5 piece Stationery Set from China.

Dear Ms. Harmon and Ms. Santos:

In your letter dated May 4, 2004, on behalf of CVS/Pharmacy you requested a tariff classification ruling.

The merchandise under consideration is a 5 Piece Mini Stationery Set (Mfg. Item No. C68V0711) consisting of a mini #10 stapler, a plastic box with 1000 #10 staples, a mini staple remover, a mini tape dispenser with tape, and a mini pencil sharpener. Two samples of the stationary sets were submitted with your ruling request and will be returned to you. Each sample contained all five items packaged for retail sale in a PVC clear plastic zip bag with a Carabiner Clip attached to the zipper tab. The stapler is designed with a base for desktop use and constructed of metal parts with a plastic covering. The staples are in stripes of 50 and housed in a small plastic box. The staple remover is constructed of metal parts with a plastic covering. The tape dispenser is constructed solely of plastic and contains a small amount of ½” wide clear tape. The pencil sharpener is constructed of plastic with a metal cutting edge and has its own waste reservoir. All items are miniature in design and fit conveniently into a small pouch measuring approximately 3½” X 2” X 1½” with two plastic handles. All items appear to be designed for use by young adults or children of primary school age.

The General Rules of Interpretation (GRIs) of the Harmonized Tariff System (HTS) governs the classification of goods put up in sets for retail sale. GRI 3(b) provides, in relevant part, that goods put up for retail sale shall be classified as if they consisted of the material or component which gives them their essential character, insofar as this criterion is applicable. The Explanatory Notes (ENs) of the HTS provide guidance in the interpretation of the Harmonized Commodity Description and Coding System at the international level. According to the ENs for GRI 3(b), “goods put up in sets for retail sale” refers to goods which: consist of at least two different articles which are, prima facie, classifiable in different headings; consist of products or articles put up together to meet a particular need or carry out a specific activity; and are put up in a manner suitable for sale directly to users without repackaging.

Under GRI 3(b), the 5 Piece Mini Stationary Set meets the definition of a set in that it is comprised of articles classifiable in different headings which have been put up together to meet the demands or needs of a specific activity such as office or school work. While it is unclear whether or not each of the set components would be used for the same “specific activity”, they do appear to be assembled to meet a particular need, namely to provide in one set a grouping of desk accessories for use by the consumer. With that in mind, we believe that there is no essential character in this set, and that each item merits equal consideration when determining classification. GRI 3(c), states:

When goods cannot be classified by reference to 3(a) or 3(b), they shall be classified under the heading which occurs last in numerical order among those which equally merit consideration.

In this particular instance, the stapler would provide the correct classification of this set.

The applicable subheading for the 5 Piece Mini Stationery Set (Item No. C68V0711) will be 8472.90.9080, Harmonized Tariff Schedule of the United States (HTS), which provides for “Other office machinesOther: Other: Other.” The general rate of duty will be 1.8 percent ad valorem.

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 Eileen S. Kaplan at 646-733-3016.


Robert B. Swierupski

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