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NY K86551

June 10, 2004
CLA-2-64:RR:NC:SP:247 K86551


TARIFF NO.: 6405.20.90

Mr. Ron Croft
P.F.C. INT’L. Inc.
9133 S La Cienega Blvd
Suite 110
Inglewood, CA 90301

RE: The tariff classification of footwear from China

Dear Mr. Croft:

In your letter received June 1, 2004, on behalf of C & C Trading, you requested a tariff classification ruling.

You identify the submitted sample, no style name or number indicated, only as a “Slipper in a Bag Set.” The item consists of a pair of open-toe, open-back indoor slippers with man-made fiber textile material uppers and textile material outer soles. The slipper has a thick foam padded, V-strap configured terry upper with a toe thong, a 1-inch high foam plastic midsole with a terry cloth textile covering and a polyester textile fabric outer sole that will contact the ground.

The slippers will be imported and sold in a zippered carrying bag that is made of the same textile fabric materials as the slipper and the bag is constructed so that it is shaped and sized to snuggly accommodate only the pair of slippers. The bag is opened using a slide fastener running across the top of the bag. The bag itself measures about 11 inches in length and about 4-1/2 inches in height, and features two carrying handles extending about five inches from either side of the carrying bag. The Explanatory Notes (EN) to the Harmonized Tariff Schedule of the United States (HTSUSA) constitute the official interpretation of the tariff at the international level. The Explanatory Notes to GRI (General Rules of Interpretation) 3(b) provides further guidance in determining essential character, and in determining what constitutes a “set.” The Explanatory Notes for GRI 3(b) define sets as (1) consisting of at least two different articles which are classifiable in different headings, (2) articles put together to meet a particular need or carry out a specific activity, (3) packed for sale directly to users without repackaging. In the examples of sets in EN (X) to GRI 3(b), holders, cases, containers, etc. may be included as components of sets. Holders, cases, etc. imported with a set should be designed to hold or carry the items which are a part of the set. Here the bag functions to provide storage for the footwear when it is not being used. If imported and presented with the pair of slippers ready for sale without re-packing, the slippers and bag meet the definition of a “set” for classification purposes. Sets are classified according to the component that gives them their essential character. Accordingly, this pair of indoor slippers packed and sold with the accompanying bag forms a set, with the shoes imparting the essential character.

The applicable subheading for the pair of indoor slippers identified as the “Slipper in a Bag Set”, with their specially shaped and fitted carrying bag will be 6405.20.90, Harmonized Tariff Schedule of the United States (HTS), which provides for footwear with uppers of textile material and outer soles of other than rubber, plastics leather or composition leather, other. The rate of duty will be 12.5% ad valorem.

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. We note that the sample slippers and the bag you have provided for this ruling request have not been marked with the country of origin. Therefore, if imported as is, the item does not meet the country of origin marking requirements of the marking statute and will be considered not legally marked.

We are returning the sample as you requested.

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 Richard Foley at 646-733-3042.


Robert B. Swierupski

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