CLA-2 CO:R:C:S 555950 RA
Mr. Bruce D. Roberts
Sig M. Gluckstad, Inc.
P.O. Box 523730
Miami, Florida 33152-3730
RE: Applicability of duty exemption under U.S. Note 2(b),
subchapter II, Chapter 98, HTSUS, to cotton hammock
mattresses from Guatemala; 555742; 555886
Dear Mr. Roberts:
This is in response to your letter of February 19, 1991,
requesting a ruling on behalf of Ecotab, Inc. concerning the
tariff treatment of the mattress portion of a hammock made in
Guatemala from U.S.-origin cotton cord. We regret the delay in
Ecotab proposes to export spools of cotton cord made in the
U.S. to Gua' mala where the cord will be cut to various lengths
and woven t' ather to create the mattress portion of a hammock.
The ends of the mattresses will be knotted to prevent
unraveling, and the completed articles will be placed inside of
plastic polybags before shipment to the U.S.
Whether the hammock mattresses are entitled to duty-free
treatment under U.S. Note 2(b), subchapter II, Chapter 98,
Harmonized Tariff Schedule of the United States (HTSUS), when
imported into the U.S.
LAW AND ANALYSIS:
U.S. Note 2(b), subchapter II, Chapter 98, HTSUS
(hereinafter referred to as "Note 2(b)"), provides, in pertinent
part, as follows:
(b) No article (except a textile article, apparel article,
or petroleum, or any product derived from petroleum...) may
be treated as a foreign article, or as subject to duty, if--
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(i) the article is--
(A) assembled or processed in whole of fabricated
components that are a product of the United
(B) processed in whole of ingredients (other than
water) that are a product of the United States, in
a beneficiary country; and
(ii) neither the fabricated components, materials or
ingredients, after exportation from the United States,
nor the article itself, before importation to the
United States, enters the commerce of any foreign
country other than a beneficiary country.
As used in this paragraph, the term 'beneficiary country'
means a country listed in General Note 3(c)(v)(A).
Guatemala is a beneficiary country listed in General Note
3(c)(v)(A), HTSUS. In regard to whether the cotton hammock
'mattresses are considered "textile articles" for purposes of
Note 2(b), we stated in a letter dated August 28, 1991 (555886),
to the Office of Textiles and Apparel, International Trade
Administration, U.S. Department of Commerce (copy enclosed), the
...as a general rule, we believe that those articles (other
than footwear and parts of footwear) classified in HTSUS
provisions which include a textile category number should be
considered "textile and apparel articles" for purposes of
U.S. Note 2(b) and, therefore, precluded from receiving
duty-free treatment under this provision. Conversely, those
articles (except petroleum and certain petroleum products)
classified in tariff provisions not containing a textile
category number should be entitled to such treatment,
assuming compliance with the requirements of U.S. Note 2(b).
Since the fabric of the subject mattress fails to qualify as
net fabric, it cannot be classified in heading 5608 and is thus
classifiable in subheading 5609.00.10, HTSUS, which provides for
articles of yarn, strip or the like of heading 5404 or 5405,
twine, cordage, rope or cables, not elsewhere specified or
included: of cotton. See Headquarters Ruling Letter (HRL)
086412 dated February 6, 1990. As this tariff provision does not
include a textile category number, we find that the hammock
mattresses are not "textile articles" for purposes of Note 2(b)
and, therefore, are eligible for duty-free treatment under this
note, assuming compliance with its requirements.
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With respect to the operations to be performed in Guatemala,
we believe that the cutting of the cords to length and the
weaving of the cut cords to create the finished mattress are
encompassed by the operations specified in Note 2(b)(i). See
HRL 555742 dated November 5, 1990.
Therefore, the subject hammock mattresses are entitled to
duty-free treatment under Note 2(b), provided they are shipped
directly to the U.S. without entering into the commerce of any
foreign country other than a beneficiary country, and the
applicable documentation requirements are satisfied. We have
enclosed a copy of a telex to Customs field offices dated
September 28, 1990, which outlines these requirements.
On the basis of the information submitted, the mattress
portion of a hammock, made in Guatemala wholly from cotton cord
of U.S. origin, is entitled to duty-free treatment under Note
2(b), upon compliance with the "direct shipment" and applicable
John Durant, Director
Commercial Rulings Division