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NY N014539

August 13, 2007



TARIFF NO.: 3923.50.0000

Ms. Laurie Peach
American Honda Motor Co., Inc.
1919 Torrance Boulevard
Torrance, CA 90501-2746

RE: The tariff classification of plastic caps from Italy and Japan.

Dear Ms. Peach:

In your letter dated July 17, 2007, you requested a tariff classification ruling.

Two samples were provided with your letter. Honda Part Number 15611-KY4-900, imported from Italy, is an oil filler cap used with the crankcase assembly of certain Honda motorcycles. This part is a threaded plastic cap used on top of the crankcase cover. The cap facilitates access to the interior of the crankcase so that additional oil can be added to the engine as needed.

Honda Part Number 78184-YG0-003, imported from Japan, is a 25 mm plug cap used with Honda model WT20 water pumps, which are centrifugal pumps operated by a gasoline engine. The plug cap is a threaded plastic cap that screws into the outer casing of the water pump. The cap operates to seal the drainage opening in the casing of the water pump. An O-ring is inserted between the plug cap and outer casing to seal the opening.

You believe that the oil filler cap should be classified in subheading 8409.91.9990, Harmonized Tariff Schedule of the United States (HTSUS), as a part of an engine, and that the plug cap should be classified in subheading 8413.91.9080, HTSUS, as a part of a water pump. You claim that classification in heading 3923, HTSUS, which provides for plastic stoppers, lids, caps and other closures, is inappropriate. You believe that heading 3923 is limited to articles that that are commonly used for the packing or conveyance of products. However, in HQ Letter 966963 of April 30, 2004, Headquarters ruled that plastic screw caps used to cover the housings of oil filters of diesel engine trucks are classified in subheading 3923.50.0000, HTSUS. HQ described heading 3923 as “the eo nomine provision for stoppers, lids, caps and other closures.” HQ also clarified, “The language of heading 3923 indicates that stoppers and lids, among other named articles, are classified there, without regard to whether they are closures for containers that are ‘for the conveyance or packing of goods’.”

You suggest classification of the oil filler cap as a part of an engine and for the plug cap as a part of a water pump. Classification under the HTSUS is made in accordance with the General Rules of Interpretation (GRIs). GRI 1 provides that classification of goods 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 GRIs may then be applied. Additional U.S. Rule of Interpretation 1(c) provides that in the absence of special language or context which otherwise requires, a provision for parts of an article covers products solely or principally used as a part of such articles but a provision for "parts" or "parts and accessories" shall not prevail over a specific provision for such part or accessory. As noted In HQ 966963, heading 3923 is an eo nomine provision for caps, and is thus a more specific provision than a provision for parts.

The applicable subheading for the oil filler cap, item 15611-KY4-900, and for the plug cap, item 78184-YG0-003, will be 3923.50.0000, HTSUS, which provides for stoppers, lids, caps and other closures, of plastics. The rate of duty will be 5.3 percent 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/.

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 Joan Mazzola at 646-733-3023.


Robert B. Swierupski

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