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NY L84050

May 10, 2005

CLA-2-84:RR:NC:1:110 L84050


TARIFF NO.: 8473.30.3000; 8473.30.5000

Ms. Gloria Johnson
Printronix, Inc.
14600 Myford Road
P.O. Box 19559
Irvine, CA 92623-9559

RE: The tariff classification and country of origin marking of a printer chassis and shuttle from Singapore.

Dear Ms. Johnson:

In your letter dated March 21, 2005 you requested a tariff classification and marking ruling.

The merchandise under consideration is a chassis and shuttle for the Printronix P5000 Line Matrix Printers. The chassis is a control/command assembly incorporating a printed circuit board assembly (PCA), a keypad (control panel) and a user interface. The chassis is essentially the body of the printer. However, it is incapable of printing until the shuttle is installed. The chassis consists of the following components:

Painted sheet metal cabinet assembly with doors, acoustic foam and window. Mechanics base assembly (installed in cabinet). Large machine aluminum casting that the shuttle assembly sits in. This base assembly has many of the printer’s metal plastic and electronic components within it. Controller printed circuit board assembly. Controller PCA with display and buttons in a plastic housing mounted to the front of the sheet metal cabinet. Power supply PCA.

The shuttle or hammerbank assembly is a control/command assembly, which incorporates a PCA and performs the printing function. This is constructed from machined aluminum castings, electrical motor, electronic coils, epoxy, screws and PCA. This assembly performs the print function in this printer.

In an email dated May 5, 2005, you indicated that the chassis and shuttle are shipped separately on an as need bases. They can be imported via ocean or air.

You have suggested that both the shuttle and the chassis are classified in subheading 8473.30.5000. While we agree with that classification for the shuttle, we believe that the chassis meets additional U.S. note 2(a) of chapter 84 and is properly classified in subheading 8473.30.3000.

The applicable subheading for the chassis will be 8473.30.3000, Harmonized Tariff Schedule of the United States (HTS), which provides for “Parts and accessoriessuitable for use solely or principally with machines of heading 8469 to 8472: Parts and accessories of the machines of heading 8471: Not incorporating a cathode ray tube: Other parts for printers, specified in additional U.S. note 2 to this chapter.” The general rate of duty will be free.

The applicable subheading for the shuttle will be 8473.30.5000, Harmonized Tariff Schedule of the United States (HTS), which provides for “Parts and accessoriessuitable for use solely or principally with machines of heading 8469 to 8472: Parts and accessories of the machines of heading 8471: Not incorporating a cathode ray tube: Other.” The general rate of duty will be free.

You also inquire as to the acceptable country of origin marking for the printer shuttle and chassis as imported from Singapore. A marked sample was not submitted with your letter for review. In an email dated May 5, 2005, you indicated that the shuttles are marked “Made in SG” and the containers are also marked with the same origin. You indicated that neither the chassis nor its container is marked with its origin.

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.

Part 134, Customs Regulations (19 CFR Part 134), implements the country of origin marking requirements and exceptions of 19 U.S.C. 1304. Section 134.41(b), Customs Regulations (19 CFR 134.41(b)), mandates that the ultimate purchaser in the U.S. must be able to find the marking easily and read it without strain. Section 134.1(d) defines the ultimate purchaser as generally the last person in the U.S. who will receive the article in the form in which it was imported. 19 CFR 134.1(d)(1) states that if an imported article will be used in manufacture, the manufacturer may be the ultimate purchaser if he subjects the imported article to a process which results in a substantial transformation of the article. The case of U.S. v. Gibson-Thomsen Co., Inc., 27 C.C.P.A. 267 (C.A.D. 98) (1940), provides that an article used in manufacture which results in an article having a name, character or use differing from that of the constituent article will be considered substantially transformed and that the manufacturer or processor will be considered the ultimate purchaser of the constituent materials. In such circumstances, the imported article is excepted from marking and only the outermost container is required to be marked. See, 19 CFR 134.35.

First, the instances in which Customs has permitted the use of abbreviations instead of the entire name of the country of origin have been limited. The abbreviation “SG.” does not unmistakably identify the country of origin of the shuttle and is not an acceptable abbreviation for Singapore.

Second, the assembly operation in the United States involves the assembly of one major subassembly (the shuttle) and three minor subassemblies (SIMM, security key and power PC sub-assembly) into the chasse. None of these components are of U.S. origin. This issue is very similar to the one under consideration in HQ 734050. In that ruling five major subassemblies of a computer printer were made in Japan and merely assembled in China. The assembly process had a low value relative to the cost of the components. Most of the value of the finished printer was from the Japanese parts. No significant additional work was done in the country of assembly. The Chinese processing involves a mere assembly. Based on these considerations, Customs concluded that the assembly of the computer printer did not constitute a substantial transformation. Therefore, the country of origin of the computer printers was found to be Japan, the country where all the parts that comprise the finished article were made. Similarly, the U.S. assembly of this Line Matrix Printer does not constitute a substantial transformation for marking purposes.

The marking of imported chassis and shuttles, as described above, does not satisfy the marking requirements of 19 U.S.C. 1304 and 19 CFR Part 134 and is not an acceptable country of origin marking for the imported chassis and shuttles. Each shuttle and chasse is required to be conspicuously, legibly and permanently marked with its country of origin (e.g. Made in Singapore).

You also inquire as to the origin and marking of the finished printer after final assembly in the United States and whether the origin and marking is applicable for export worldwide.

Origin determinations for export are beyond the authority of this department. With regard to your request concerning the qualification of these goods as “US ORIGIN”, labeling products of U.S. origin must be addressed at the Federal Trade Commission (FTC). Please present this issue to the proper authority.

The FTC has jurisdiction concerning the use of the phrase "Made in the U.S.A.", or similar words denoting U.S. origin. You should contact the Federal Trade Commission, Division of Enforcement, 6th & Pennsylvania Avenue, N.W., Washington, D.C. 20508, which has jurisdiction concerning the approval of markings "Made in the U.S.A."

For questions concerning the marking requirements of products imported into Canada, please contact the proper authority for the Canadian Marking Program:

Chief, Interdepartmental Programs Commercial Operations Revenue Canada, Customs, Excise and Tax 5th Floor 555 Mackenzie Avenue Ottawa, Ontario K1A 0L5 Tel: (613) 954-7129; FAX: (613) 952-1698

For questions concerning the import requirements relating to imports into Mexico under the North American Free Trade Agreement, please contact:

Secretaria de Hacienda y Credito Publico Subsecretaria de Ingresos Direccion General Fiscal Internacional Avenida Hidalgo #77, Modulo 1 Planta Baja, Colonia Guerrero Delegacion Cuauhtemoc 06300 Mexico, D.F.

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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