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NY R02337

August 9, 2005

MAR-2 RR:NC:2:224 R02337


Elisabeth Nimmo-Price
U.S. Customs Compliance Manager
Microsoft Corporation
One Microsoft Way
Redmond WA 98052-6399

RE: Country of origin marking requirements applicable to video game systems.

Dear Ms. Nimmo-Price:

This is in response to your electronic communication dated July 28, 2005, requesting a ruling on whether certain proposed markings for the imported Xbox 360 Pro Video Game System are acceptable country of origin markings under the marking statute, section 304, Tariff Act of 1930, as amended (19 U.S.C. 1304).

You state that the Xbox Pro Video Game System will be imported into the United States in a condition ready for sale at retail. Included in the retail package with the Xbox 360 game console will be system accessories, specifically a headset, a gamepad/controller, a remote control and an external hard disk drive (HDD). The Xbox 360 console, headset, gamepad/controller and remote control are manufactured in China. The HDDs are manufactured in Korea, Thailand or Singapore. Although the external HDDs are individually marked with their country of origin and imported directly to China and entered into the manufacturer’s inventory system, production and packaging processes as well as part numbering formulas would make it unreasonable to differentiate and identify the origin of any one HDD in a retail box.

Thus, we face the issue of determining a country of origin mark that conforms a retail set composed of components having different countries of origin to the requirements of the marking statute. Based on these circumstances, you propose that the country of origin marking requirements will be satisfied by marking on the outside of the individual, sealed retail carton (and the outer shipping package) the phrase “Console Made in China; Accessories made in China, Korea, Thailand or Singapore.”

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.

As provided in section 134.41(b), Customs Regulations (19 CFR 134.41(b)), the country of origin marking is considered conspicuous if the ultimate purchaser in the U.S. is able to find the marking easily and read it without strain. That section further provides that the degree of permanence should be at least sufficient to insure that in any reasonably foreseeable circumstance the marking shall remain on the article until it reaches the ultimate purchaser unless it is deliberately removed. Under 19 C.F.R. 134.24(d)(2), articles which are sold in sealed containers which are normally unopened by the ultimate purchaser before purchase must be marked to indicate the country of origin of its contents.

We are of the opinion that where the Xbox 360 console and accompanying headset, gamepad, remote control and external HDD, which are themselves marked with their respective countries of origin, are imported into the U.S. in a sealed carton, the marking “Xbox 360 console, headset, game pad, and remote control made in China; hard disc drive made in South Korea, Thailand or Singapore” printed conspicuously on the carton or on a central origin label permanently affixed to the carton in a conspicuous location most properly satisfies the requirements of 19 U.S.C. 1304 and 19 CFR Part 134. Taking into account your concerns of striking an acceptable balance between limited label space and meeting the statutory requirements of legibility and conspicuousness, and the presumed knowledge of the typical video game purchaser, we would also consider acceptable the mark “console, headset, game pad and remote control made in CN; HDD made in KR, TH or SG”

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 Tom McKenna at 646-733-3025.


Robert B. Swierupski

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