United States International Trade Commision Rulings And Harmonized Tariff Schedule
faqs.org  Rulings By Number  Rulings By Category  Tariff Numbers
faqs.org > Rulings and Tariffs Home > Rulings By Number > 2007 HQ Rulings > HQ W967939 - HQ W968210 > HQ W968162

Previous Ruling Next Ruling
HQ W968162

May 21, 2007



TARIFF NO.: 6305.39.0000

Gordon Rahschulte
UPS Trade Management, Inc.
12380 Morris Road
Alpharetta, GA 30005

RE: Reconsideration of NY L89286; dated January 18, 2006, concerning the tariff classification of carrying bags from Mexico

Dear Mr. Rahschulte:

This is in reference to your letter of March 18, 2006, on behalf of your client, BAGMASTERS, a division of CTA Manufacturing, Inc., in which you requested reconsideration of New York Ruling Letter (NY) L89286, dated January 18, 2006, which classified five carrying bags from Mexico in subheadings 4202.12.8030 and 4202.92.3031, Harmonized Tariff Schedule of the United States Annotated (HTSUS). Your request, along with four samples, was forwarded to this office for our consideration. This reconsideration request is limited to styles MR03, CB04, LB04, and FB03.

Pursuant to section 625(c), Tariff Act of 1930 (19 U.S.C. §1625(c)), as amended by section 623 of Title VI (Customs Modernization) of the North American Free Trade Agreement Implementation Act, Pub. L. 103–182, 107 Stat. 2057, 2186 (1993), notice of the proposed modification was published on April 11, 2007 in the CUSTOMS BULLETIN in Volume 41, Number 16. No comments were received in response to this notice.


NY L89286, dated January 18, 2006, classified five styles of carrying bags. The facts, which were taken directly from the ruling at issue, are as follows:

The bags are identified as styles PR532, nylon mesh shopping bag, MR03, 100-denier nylon mailbag, CB04, polyester top zip courier bag, LB04, 1000 denier nylon locking security bag, and FB03, 420 denier nylon flame barrier bag. Each bag is wholly of man-made fiber textile materials.

You have indicated that the bags are packing materials of the kind classified in Heading 6305, HTSUSA, which provides, in part, for other made-up textile articles, sacks and bags, of a kind used for the packing of goods. Heading 6305 provides for bags that are principally used in the marketing and transportation of goods. The Heading does include bags that are used in the sending of samples by post.

Styles FB03, CB04 and LB04 were classified in subheading 4202.12.8030, which provides for attaché cases, briefcases, school satchels, occupational luggage cases, and similar containers, with outer surface of textile materials, of man-made fibers. MR03 and PR532 were classified in subheading 4202.92.3031, HTSUS, which provides, in part, for other travel, sports and similar bags, with outer surface of textile materials, of man-made fibers.

In your submission, you requested to exclude PR532 from this reconsideration. You also provided a description of the four styles of carrying bags as follows:

MR03: a “mailbag” made of 1000 denier nylon that measures approximately 26 inches in height x 23 inches in width x 4 inches in depth with a drawstring closure that fits through #3 spur grommets. CB04: a “top zip courier bag” made of polyester with an inside entry window. The bag measures approximately 19 inches in height x 24 inches in width. LB04: a “locking security bag” made of 1000 denier nylon and measures approximately 14 inches in height x 18 inches in width. It has a heavy-duty nickel silver zipper and heavy-duty pop-up lock.

FB03: a “boxed bottom flame barrier bag” that is made of a 1000 denier nylon exterior, single layer fiber-shield center and a 420 denier nylon interior. It also features a heavy-duty brass zipper, snap zipper flap and clear vinyl windows on each side and measures approximately 16 inches in height x 21 inches in width x 6 inches in depth.

You state in your submission that the subject bags are used for commercial purposes.


What is the classification of the four subject carrying bags?


  Classification of goods under the HTSUS is governed by the General Rules of Interpretation (GRI). GRI 1 provides that classification shall be determined according to the terms of the headings of the tariff schedule and any relative section or chapter notes. In the event that the goods cannot be classified solely on the basis of GRI 1, and if the headings and legal notes do not otherwise require, the remaining GRI may then be applied. The Harmonized Commodity Description and Coding System Explanatory Notes (EN) constitute the official interpretation at the international level. While neither legally binding nor dispositive, the EN provide a commentary on the scope of each heading of the HTSUS and are generally indicative of the proper interpretation of the headings.

The issue in this case is whether the subject bags are classifiable in 4202, which provides for various containers that are of a kind designed for the storage, protection, organization and portability of various goods including documents, papers and similar goods, or in heading 6305, HTSUSA, which provides for sacks and bags, of a kind used for the packing of goods.

Heading 4202 provides for

Trunks, suitcases, vanity cases, attache cases, briefcases, school satchels, spectacle cases, binocular cases, camera cases, musical instrument cases, gun cases, holsters and similar containers; traveling bags, insulated food or beverage bags, toiletry bags, knapsacks and backpacks, handbags, shopping bags, wallets, purses, map cases, cigarette cases, tobacco pouches, tool bags, sports bags, bottle cases, jewelry boxes, powder cases, cutlery cases and similar containers, of leather or of composition leather, of sheeting of plastics, of textile materials, of vulcanized fiber or of paperboard, or wholly or mainly covered with such materials or with paper: [emphasis added]

U.S. Additional Note 1 to Chapter 42, states:

For the purposes of heading 4202, the expression “travel, sports and similar bags” means goods, other than those falling in subheadings 4202.11 through 4202.39, of a kind designed for carrying clothing and other personal effects during travel, including backpacks and shopping bags of this heading, but does not include binocular cases, camera cases, musical instrument cases, bottle cases and similar containers.

The EN to heading 4202 states, in pertinent part:

This heading covers only the articles specifically named therein and similar containers.

These containers may be rigid or with a rigid foundation, or soft and without foundation.

Although there is no definition of the term “personal effects” within the tariff, there is the view that the term “connotes objects to which an individual has some sort of intimate or personal relation.” See Headquarters Ruling Letter 954072, dated September 2, 1993. It is also our view that heading 4202 provides for containers used to convey personal articles in general (i.e., articles belonging to a person), and that its “scope extends to various containers that are to store and/or transport the belongings of an individual, as opposed to bulk or commercial goods.” Id.; HQ 967177, dated July 22, 2004, which eliminated headings 4202 and 6305 from consideration and classified a pizza delivery bag that contained an induction element designed for only commercial use for conveying products directly from seller to customer in heading 6307, HTSUSA.

Heading 6305, HTSUSA, covers textile sacks and bags, of a kind used for the packing of goods. The EN to heading 6305 states, in pertinent part, that:

This heading covers textile sacks and bags of a kind normally used for the packing of goods for transport, storage or sale.

These articles, which vary in size and shape, include in particular flexible intermediate bulk containers, coal, grain, flour, potato, coffee or similar sacks, mail bags, and small bags of the kind used for sending samples of merchandise by post. The heading also includes such articles as tea sachets.

It is clear that the articles listed under heading 6305, HTSUSA, are of the type used for commercial merchandise being transported or stored for sale, usually in bulk. But see, e.g., HQ 955639, dated April 5, 1994, which classified a polypropylene strip bag used by a municipality for distribution to the public for use in storing yard waste for curbside pickup in subheading 6307.90.9986, HTSUSA; see also HQ 089444, dated September 3, 1991, which classified a woven polypropylene bag in heading 6305.

You assert that the subject bags are designed for commercial use and not for consumers. In your submission, you referenced your client’s website, www.bagmasters.com, which you state supports that the bags are marketed for commercial use. We searched the website but did not locate the items at issue. Rather, we found them under www.bagproducts.com, which states: “For over 75 years Bag Products has been producing a wide range of products that solve problems for businesses like yoursAs you examine the contents of this catalog, you will find solutions to the everyday issues that confront your business. Bag Products is eager to provide your business with products that will help it run smoother and more efficiently.”

Upon review, we find this to be convincing that the articles are designed for commercial use and not individualized, consumer use. In this case, the subject bags are used for transportation, conveyance and storage of various commercial documents and articles such as mail/parcel documents and currency. Based on the design and use of these bags, they are precluded from classification in heading 4202 and more appropriately classified in heading 6305, HTSUSA. For classification of substantially similar articles, see HQ 084519, dated May 18, 1989, which classified a cotton bag used by banks for transporting coins in heading 6305, and NY L80890, which classified a polypropylene strip mailbag from China in heading 6305.


Styles MR03, CB04, LB04 and FB03 are classifiable in subheading 6305.39.0000, Harmonized Tariff Schedule of the United States (HTSUS), which provides for “sacks and bags, of a kind used for the packing of goods: of man-made textile materials: other.” The general column one duty rate is 8.4 percent ad valorem and the merchandise falls within textile category 669.


New York Ruling Letter (NY) L89286, dated January 18, 2006, is hereby MODIFIED. In accordance with 19 U.S.C. §1625(c), this ruling will become effective 60 days after its publication in the CUSTOMS BULLETIN.


Myles B. Harmon, Director
Commercial and Trade Facilitation Division

Previous Ruling Next Ruling

See also: