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NY L84682

May 10, 2005

MAR-2 RR:NC:N1:121 L84682


Mr. Peter San Miguel
IQ Headgear LLC
33 Market Point Drive
Greenville, South Carolina 29607


Dear Mr. San Miguel:

This is in response to your letter dated April 28, 2005, requesting a ruling on whether the proposed method of marking the container in which the medallion is imported with the country of origin in lieu of marking the article itself is an acceptable country of origin marking for the imported medallion. A marked sample container was submitted with your letter for review.

The sample you submitted is a 2-sided medallion made of base metal, which is enclosed in a folded card. The medallion measures 1&1/4 inches in diameter. One side contains the words “upward” and “basketball,” along with images of a basketball and a star. The other side contains the word, “upward” and an image of a star in the center, surrounded by the names of various bible verses. The folded card, which is attached to and encloses the coin, details instructions in religious faith. You state that the medallions are used as awards and learning tools for youth members participating in a church basketball league.

Your letter states that both the medallion and the card are produced in China. The medallion, itself, is not marked with the country of origin. The folded card, however, includes the words, “Made in China,” on the bottom of its reverse-side.

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. If an imported article is to be sold at retail in its imported form, the purchaser at retail is the ultimate purchaser. With respect to promotional items, 19 CFR 134.1(d)(2) indicates that if the imported article is distributed as a gift the recipient is the "ultimate purchaser."

An article is excepted from marking under 19 U.S.C. 1304 (a)(3)(D) and section 134.32(d), Customs Regulations (19 CFR 134.32(d)), if the marking of a container of such article will reasonably indicate the origin of such article. Accordingly, if Customs is satisfied that the article will remain in its container until it reaches the ultimate purchaser and if the ultimate purchaser can tell the country of origin of the medallion by viewing the container in which it is packaged, the individual medallion would be excepted from marking under this provision.

Medallions which are imported in cards that are marked in the manner described above, are excepted from marking under 19 U.S.C. 1304 (a)(3)(D) and 19 CFR 134.32(d). Accordingly, marking the card in which the medallions are imported and given to the ultimate purchaser in lieu of marking the article itself is an acceptable country of origin marking for the imported medallion provided the port director is satisfied that the article will remain in the marked card until it reaches the ultimate purchaser.

This ruling is being issued under the provisions of Part 177 of the Customs Regulations (19 CFR Part 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 Barbara Kaiser at 646-733-3024.


Robert B. Swierupski

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