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NY N014298

August 1, 2007



TARIFF NO.: 6402.99.3165

Ms. Maria E. Julia
Newport News Holding Corp.
711 Third Avenue, 4th Floor
New York, NY 10017

RE: The tariff classification of footwear from China

Dear Ms. Julia:

In your letter dated July 11, 2007 you requested a tariff classification ruling.

The submitted half pair sample, identified as Style # S08-09-115, is a women’s open-toe, open-heel thong sandal of the slip-on type. The upper consists of a single molded rubber/plastic “V” configured strap with a toe-thong, the ends of which penetrate and are secured by plugs into a rubber/plastic outsole that varies in thickness from 3/8-inch at the toe to over 7/8-inch at the heel. Although this sandal looks very much like a “zori,” it is precluded from being classified as one because it has an outsole that is not approximately of uniform thickness.

In TD 93-88 dated October 25, 1993 certain “Footwear Definitions” were published to provide some guidelines used by Customs to classify footwear under Chapter 64 of the Harmonized Tariff Schedules of the United States. Briefly, some standard characteristics of a “zori” include an upper, which is a single molded piece of rubber/plastic; a rubber/plastic outsole that is less than 2 inches thick at its thickest point; the outsole must not have a separate insole and the outsole is approximately uniform in thickness, i.e., the thickest point is neither more than 3/8-inch thicker than the thinnest point nor more than 35 percent thicker than the thinnest point. As stated previously, the sandal you have submitted for this ruling has an outsole with a characteristic that is not typical of a “zori” and therefore it cannot be classified as such.

The applicable subheading for the women’s sandal, identified a Style # S08-09-115, will be 6402.99.3165, Harmonized Tariff Schedule of the United States (HTSUS), which provides for footwear, in which both the upper's and outer sole's external surface is predominately rubber and/or plastics; which does not cover the ankle; in which the upper's external surface area measures over 90% rubber and/or plastics (including any accessories or reinforcements); which does not have a foxing-like band; and which is not designed to be a protection against water, oil, grease or chemicals or cold or inclement weather. The rate of duty will be 6% ad valorem.

Duty rates are provided for your convenience and are subject to change. The text of the most recent HTSUS and the accompanying duty rates are provided on World Wide Web at http://www.usitc.gov/tata/hts/.

The submitted sample is not marked with the country of origin. Therefore, if imported as is, the footwear will not meet the country of origin marking requirements of 19 U.S.C. 1304. Accordingly, the footwear would be considered not legally marked under the provisions of 19 C.F.R. 134.11 which states, "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 container) will permit, in such manner as to indicate to the ultimate purchaser in the U.S. the English name of the country of origin of the article."

We are returning the sample as you requested.

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 Richard Foley at 646-733-3042.


Robert B. Swierupski

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