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NY N022961

February 26, 2008



TARIFF NO.: 8536.69.4040

Ms. Janet C. Wallett
825 Old Trail Road
Etters, PA 17319

RE: The tariff classification of connectors from China.

Dear Ms. Wallett:

In your letter dated January 28, 2008, you requested a tariff classification ruling.

The merchandise under consideration consists of five printed circuit board (PCB) connectors. Samples of three kits and mechanical drawings were submitted with your ruling request. The samples will be returned to you. The five connectors are identified as the Sofix RA Header Kit P/N 52088-202LF, Sofix RA Header Kit P/N 52089-202LF, Sofix Board Mount Kit P/N 72800-211LF, Sofix Board Mount Kit P/N 72860-201LF and the Sofix Board Mount Kit P/N 72844-201LF.

The five connectors are right angle printed circuit board header connectors suitable for the distribution of electrical power and signals. Header connectors are basically a disk or wafer of insulating material through which one or more electrical contact pins or leads pass, creating a plug-in unit. Each kit is packaged with contact strips, a header connector and a shielding cover. All connectors are rated to withstand a voltage (V) not exceeding 1000 V. In the installation process, the contact strips, which are spring clamps, are soldered onto a PCB, the header connector, which is a multi-pin plug, is inserted between the contact strips with the header contact pins passing through the PCB and soldered into place. Finally, the metal shielding cover is placed over the header connector and held in place by the contact strips. The contact strips are manufactured of stainless steel. The shielding covers are manufactured from zinc alloy. The header connectors are rectangular in shape and constructed of plastic with tinbronze contact pins. The five connectors vary in configuration from 8 to 24 contact pins.

The General Rules of Interpretation (GRIs) of the Harmonized Tariff System (HTS) governs the classification of goods put up in sets for retail sale. GRI 3(b) provides, in relevant part, that goods put up for retail sale shall be classified as if they consisted of the material or component which gives them their essential character. The Explanatory Notes (ENs) of the HTS provide guidance in the interpretation of the Harmonized Commodity Description and Coding System at the international level. According to the ENs for GRI 3(b), “goods put up in sets for retail sale” refers to goods which: consist of at least two different articles which are, prima facie, classifiable in different headings; consist of products or articles put up together to meet a particular need or carry out a specific activity; and are put up in a manner suitable for sale directly to users without repackaging.

The five Sofix Kits meet the definition of “goods put up in sets for retail sale.” As per GRI 3(b), classification is determined by the component, or components taken together, which confer on the set as a whole its essential character. The PCB header connectors clearly provide the essential character of each kit.

The applicable subheading for the Sofix RA Header Kit P/N 52088-202LF, Sofix RA Header Kit P/N 52089-202LF, Sofix Board Mount Kit P/N 72800-211LF, Sofix Board Mount Kit P/N 72860-201LF and the Sofix Board Mount Kit P/N 72844-201LF will be 8536.69.4040, Harmonized Tariff Schedule of the United States (HTSUS), which provides for “Electrical apparatus for switching or protecting electrical circuits, or for making connections to or in electrical circuitsfor a voltage not exceeding 1,000 V: Lamp-holders, plugs and sockets: Other: Coaxial connectorsprinted circuit connectors; ribbon or flat cable connectors: Printed circuit connectors.” The general rate of duty will be free.

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 Thomas Campanelli at 646-733-3016.


Robert B. Swierupski

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