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NY N024360

March 28, 2008



TARIFF NO.: 6217.10.9510

Joseph A Acayan
Givens & Johnston PLLC
950 Echo Lane, Suite 360
Houston, TX 77024-2788

RE: The tariff classification and status under the Dominican Republic-Central America-United States Free Trade Agreement (DR-CAFTA), of a belt from Guatemala.

Dear Mr. Acayan:

In your letter dated March 5, 2008, on behalf of TATA, S.A., you requested a ruling on the status of a belt under the DR-CAFTA.

The merchandise is a belt constructed of woven 1½-inch wide cotton cable fabric and leather with a zinc buckle. The buckle is attached to the leather, which forms the adjustable front portion of the belt. The balance of the belt is fabric, which imparts the essential character of the belt.

The manufacturing process in Guatemala is as follows:

Narrow cotton cable fabric from Taiwan or Indonesia is cut to length. Leather straps from Italy or Mexico are cut to shape and dyed. The leather straps are stitched with synthetic sewing thread from Guatemala and attached to the cotton cable. The buckles are attached to the belt.
The belt is packaged for retail sale on plastic hangers from China.

The applicable tariff provision for the belt be 6217.10.9510, Harmonized Tariff Schedule of the United States (HTSUS), which provides for "Other made up clothing accessories: parts of garment or of clothing accessories, other than those of heading 6212: Accessories: Other: Other, Of cotton." The rate of duty will be 14.6% 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 belt falls within textile category 359. With the exception of certain products of China, quota/visa requirements are no longer applicable for merchandise which is the product of World Trade Organization (WTO) member countries. Quota and visa requirements are the result of international agreements that are subject to frequent renegotiations and changes. To obtain the most current information on quota and visa requirements applicable to this merchandise, we suggest you check, close to the time of shipment, the “Textile Status Report for Absolute Quotas” which is available on our web site at www.cbp.gov. For current information regarding possible textile safeguard actions on goods from China and related issues, we refer you to the web site of the Office of Textiles and Apparel of the Department of Commerce at otexa.ita.doc.gov.

General Note 29, HTSUS, sets forth the criteria for determining whether a good is originating under the DR-CAFTA. General Note 29(b), HTSUS, (19 U.S.C. § 1202) states, in pertinent part, that

For the purposes of this note, subject to the provisions of subdivisions (c), (d), (m) and (n) thereof, a good imported into the customs territory of the United States is eligible for treatment as an originating good under the terms of this note if—

(i)the good is a good wholly obtained or produced entirely in the territory of one or more of the parties to the Agreement;

(ii) the good was produced entirely in the territory of one or more of the parties to the Agreement, and—

(A) each of the nonoriginating materials used in the production of the good undergoes an applicable change in tariff classification specified in subdivision (n) of this note; or

(B) the good otherwise satisfies any applicable regional value content or other requirements specified in subdivision (n) of this note;
and the good satisfies all other applicable requirements of this note; or

(iii) the good was produced entirely in the territory of one or more of the parties to the Agreement exclusively from originating materials.

Chapter 62, Chapter rule 2 states in pertinent part:

For purposes of determining whether a good of this chapter is originating, the rule applicable to that good shall only apply to the component that determines the tariff classification of the good and such component must satisfy the tariff change requirements set out in the rule for that good.

The component that determines the classification of the good is the woven cotton cable fabric.

For goods classified in heading 6217, General Note 29 (n) 62.41 requires:

A change to headings 6213 through 6217 from any other chapter, except from headings 5111 through 5113, 5204 through 5212, 5310 through 5311, chapter 54, headings 5508 through 5516, 5801 through 5802 or 6001 through 6006, provided that the good is cut or knit to shape, or both, and sewn or otherwise assembled in the territory of one or more of the parties to the Agreement.

The belt was cut and sewn in Guatemala from narrow cotton cable fabric of heading 5806 from Taiwan or Indonesia. Accordingly, the merchandise qualifies for preferential treatment under DR-CAFTA because it meets the requirements of General Note 29 (n) 62.41.

     Chapter 62, rule 4 states in pertinent part:

Notwithstanding chapter rule 2 to this chapter, a good of this chapter containing sewing thread of headings 5204, 5401 or 5508, shall be considered originating only if such sewing thread is both formed and finished in the territory of one or more of the parties of the agreement.

The sewing thread of heading 5401 is of Guatemalan origin.

Based on the facts provided, the goods described above qualify for DR-CAFTA preferential treatment, because they will meet the requirements of HTSUS General Note 29(b)(ii)(A). The goods will therefore be entitled to a Free rate of duty under the DR-CAFTA upon compliance with all applicable laws, regulations, and agreements.

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 Kenneth Reidlinger at 646-733-3053.


Robert B. Swierupski

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