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NY L80505





November 18, 2004
CLA-2-RR:NC:WA:361 L80505

CATEGORY: CLASSIFICATION

Mr. Steven Z. Haber
Grunfeld, Desiderio, Lebowitz, Silverman & Klestadt LLP Counselors at Law
399 Park Avenue, 25th Floor
New York, NY 10022-4877

RE: Country of origin determination for women’s woven shorts; 19 C.F.R. §102.21(c)(4).

Dear Mr. Haber:

This is in reply to your letter dated October 19, 2004, submitted on behalf of Annsfield Apparel Limited. Your request concerns a country of origin determination for women’s shorts. As you requested, the submitted partially assembled samples will be returned to you under separate cover.

FACTS:

Style FGL 25485A will be constructed from 97 percent cotton, three-percent spandex woven fabric. The shorts have a waistband, belt loops, a back yoke below the waistband, a front opening with a zipper closure, two front pockets, and two rear pockets with pocket flaps. The shorts will also be imported with a self-fabric belt.

We assume that the shorts and belt will be sold together at retail as a unit. They are adapted to each other, are mutually complementary and together form a whole that would not normally be offered for sale in separate parts. As such, they meet the definition of a composite good found in the Explanatory Notes to the General Rules of Interpretation, 3(b). The essential character of style FGL 25485A is imparted by the shorts.

Style FGL 25489 will be constructed from 100 percent cotton blue denim fabric. The shorts have a waistband, belt loops, a back yoke below the waistband, a front opening with a zipper closure, two front pockets and two rear pockets.

The manufacturing operations for the shorts will be as follows:

Style FGL 25485A

China
Cut fabric into components
Two back panels are sewn together, completing the back rise The back yoke is attached to the back panel* The two front panels are attached to the back at the side seams The fly is formed on the left front panel, and zipper is attached The waistband is formed and attached*
The right portion of the fly is attached below the waistband at the right front of the garment* The belt loops are formed and attached*
The front pockets are attached
The rear pockets and pocket flaps are attached* The self fabric belt is formed

Nicaragua
Left portion of fly is attached to the left front panel* Zipper is attached to left front
Front rise is completed
Inseams are sewn
Buttonholes are sewn and buttons attached Rivets and buckle are attached to belt
Garment is hemmed
Garment is washed, pressed and packed.

Style FGL 25489

China
Cut fabric into components
Waistband is formed*
Two back panels are sewn together, completing the back rise The back yoke is attached to the back panel* The two front panels are attached to the back at the side seams The fly is formed on the left front panel, and zipper is attached The right portion of the fly is formed and tacked to the bottom of the fly opening* The belt loops are formed and attached*
The front and back pockets are attached

Nicaragua
Left portion of fly is attached to the left front panel* Zipper is attached to left front
Front rise is completed
Waistband is attached
Inseams are sewn
Button is attached
Rivets and buckle are attached to belt
Garment is hemmed
Garment is washed, pressed and packed.

*These steps, although not mentioned in the list of operations, are apparent from the submitted partially assembled garment, and are, therefore, included.

ISSUE:

What are the classification and country of origin of the subject merchandise?

CLASSIFICATION:

The applicable subheading for both garments will be 6204.62.4055, Harmonized Tariff Schedule of the United States Annotated (HTSUSA), which provides for Women’sshorts: of cotton. The general rate of duty is 16.6 percent ad valorem.

The garments fall within textile category designation 348. The designated textile and apparel categories and their quota and visa status are the result of international agreements that are subject to frequent renegotiations and changes. To obtain the most current information, we suggest that you check, close to the time of shipment, the U.S. Customs Service Textile Status Report, an internal issuance of the U.S. Customs Service, which is available at the Customs Web Site at WWW.CBP.GOV. In addition, the designated textile and apparel categories may be subdivided into parts. If so, visa and quota requirements applicable to the subject merchandise may be affected and should also be verified at the time of shipment.

COUNTRY OF ORIGIN - LAW AND ANALYSIS:

Section 334 of the Uruguay Round Agreements Act (codified at 19 U.S.C. 3592), enacted on December 8, 1994, provided rules of origin for textiles and apparel entered, or withdrawn from warehouse for consumption, on and after July 1, 1996. Section 102.21, Customs Regulations (19 C.F.R. 102.21), published September 5, 1995, in the Federal Register, implements Section 334 (60 FR 46188). Section 334 of the URAA was amended by section 405 of the Trade and Development Act of 2000, enacted on May 18, 2000, and accordingly, section 102.21 was amended (68 Fed. Reg. 8711). Thus, the country of origin of a textile or apparel product shall be determined by the sequential application of the general rules set forth in paragraphs (c)(1) through (5) of Section 102.21.

Paragraph (c)(1) states that "The country of origin of a textile or apparel product is the single country, territory, or insular possession in which the good was wholly obtained or produced." As the subject merchandise is not wholly obtained or produced in a single country, territory or insular possession, paragraph (c)(1) of Section 102.21 is inapplicable.

Paragraph (c)(2) states that "Where the country of origin of a textile or apparel product cannot be determined under paragraph (c)(1) of this section, the country of origin of the good is the single country, territory, or insular possession in which each of the foreign materials incorporated in that good underwent an applicable change in tariff classification, and/or met any other requirement, specified for the good in paragraph (e) of this section:"

Paragraph (e) in pertinent part states that "The following rules shall apply for purposes of determining the country of origin of a textile or apparel product under paragraph (c)(2) of this section":

HTSUS Tariff shift and/or other requirements 6201–6208
If the good consists of two or more component parts, a change to an assembled good of heading 6201 through 6208 from unassembled components, provided that the change is the result of the good being wholly assembled in a single country, territory, or insular possession.

If the good does not consist of two or more component parts, a change to heading 6201 through 6208 from any heading outside that group, except from heading 5007, 5111 through 5113, 5208 through 5212, 5309 through 5311, 5407 through 5408, 5512 through 5516, 5602 through 5603, 5801 through 5806, 5809 through 5811, 5903, 5906 through 5907, and 6217, and subheading 6307.90, and provided that the change is the result of a fabric-making process.6101–6117

The subject garment will be classified within the above noted range, in heading 6204. The garment consists of two or more components. As the garment is not wholly assembled in a single country, the terms of the tariff shift are not met.

Section 102.21(c)(3) states that, "Where the country of origin of a textile or apparel product cannot be determined under paragraph (c)(1) or (2) of this section": (i) If the good was knit to shape, the country of origin of the good is the single country, territory, or insular possession in which the good was knit; or (ii) Except for goods of heading 5609, 5807, 5811, 6213, 6214, 6301 through 6306, and 6308, and subheadings 6209.20.5040, 6307.10, 6307.90, and 9404.90, if the good was not knit to shape and the good was wholly assembled in a single country, territory, or insular possession, the country of origin of the good is the country, territory, or insular possession in which the good was wholly assembled.

As the subject merchandise is neither knit to shape, nor wholly assembled in a single country, Section 102.21 (c)(3) is inapplicable.

Section 102.21 (c)(4) states, "Where the country of origin of a textile or apparel product cannot be determined under paragraph (c)(1), (2) or (3) of this section, the country of origin of the good is the single country, territory or insular possession in which the most important assembly or manufacturing process occurred".

For style 25485A, the most important assembly operations occur where the fly and zipper are attached to the left front panel and the front rise is completed, and the inseams are sewn. Accordingly, the country of origin is Nicaragua, the country in which these operations occur. As noted above, this style is a composite good consisting of shorts and a self-fabric belt, with the essential character imparted by the shorts. As such, the country of origin of the shorts will determine the country of origin of the composite good and the country of origin of the belt is not determined separately. See HQ 959342 of July 18, 1996.

For style FGL 25489, the most important assembly operations occur where the fly and zipper are attached to the left front panel and the front rise is completed, the waistband is attached, and the inseams are sewn. Accordingly, the country of origin is Nicaragua, the country in which these operations occur.

HOLDING:

The country of origin of both styles is Nicaragua. Based upon international textile trade agreements products of Nicaragua are neither subject to quota nor to the requirement of a visa The holding set forth above applies only to the specific factual situation and merchandise identified in the ruling request. This position is clearly set forth in section 19 C.F.R. §177.9(b)(1). This sections states that a ruling letter, either directly, by reference, or by implication, is accurate and complete in every material respect.

This ruling is being issued under the provisions of Part 177 of the Customs Regulations (19 C.F.R. 177). Should it be subsequently determined that the information furnished is not complete and does not comply with 19 C.F.R. §177.9(b)(1), the ruling will be subject to modification or revocation. In the event there is a change in the facts previously furnished, this may affect the determination of country of origin. Accordingly, if there is any change in the facts submitted to Customs, it is recommended that a new ruling request be submitted in accordance with 19 C.F.R. §177.2.

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 Angela De Gaetano at 646-733-3052.

Sincerely,

Robert B. Swierupski
Director,

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