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NY M86112

September 13, 2006

MAR-2 RR:NC:1:117 M86112


Mr. Rick Barrantes
Lamart Corp.
16 Richmond Street
Clifton, NJ 07011


Dear Mr. Barrantes:

This is in response to your letter dated August 24, 2006 requesting a ruling as to the proper country of origin and consequent marking of aluminum backed tape. Your letter requests that we address whether tape that has been slit to smaller sizes has been substantially transformed in the United States.

In your letter you state that you import rolls of backed aluminum foil tape from China. These jumbo rolls measure 55 inches wide and about 2000 yards in length. You indicate that you will slit and rewind these rolls to smaller sizes in the United States. The resized rolls of tape will measure 2 inches wide by 60 yards in length. The rolls will then be packed and sold in cases to the final end user.

 The "country of origin" is defined in 19 CFR 134.1(b) as "the country of manufacture, production, or growth of any article of foreign origin entering the United States. Further work or material added to an article in another country must effect a substantial transformation in order to render such other country the 'country of origin' within the meaning of this part. For tariff purposes, the courts have held that a substantial transformation occurs if a new and different article emerges having a distinctive name, character or use. Anheuser Busch Brewing Association v. The United States, 207 U.S. 556 (1908) and Uniroyal Inc. v. United States, 542 F. Supp. 1026 (1982).

     In this case, the slitting of the roll does not result in a substantial transformation. The resized rolls do not have a distinctive name, character or use different from the jumbo rolls. Therefore, the slit rolls are a good of China for marking purposes.

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.

With regard to the permanency of a marking, section 134.41(a), Customs Regulations (19 CFR 134.41(a)), provides that as a general rule marking requirements are best met by marking worked into the article at the time of manufacture. For example, it is suggested that the country of origin on metal articles be die sunk, molded in, or etched. However, section 134.44, Customs Regulations (19 CFR 134.44), generally provides that any marking that is sufficiently permanent so that it will remain on the article until it reaches the ultimate purchaser unless deliberately removed is acceptable.

You have not proposed a method for marking these rolls. The country of origin marking, “Made in China” should be consistent with the requirements listed above.

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 Gloria Stingone at 646-733-3020.


Robert B. Swierupski

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