CLA-2 CO:R:C:T 950022 SK
TARIFF NOS.: 5903.20.2500; 5407.42.0030
Mr. Bill Kaczmarek
Seattle Textile Co.
5700 1st Avenue South
Seattle, WA 98108
RE: Polyurethane plastic coating applied to nylon woven fabric;
Note 2(a)(1), Chapter 59; plastic coating visible to the eye
Dear Mr. Kaczmarek:
This is in response to your inquiry of June 24, 1991,
requesting a classification ruling on behalf of Seattle Textile
Company. The articles at issue are polyurethane-coated woven
nylon fabrics. The fabrics will be imported from Thailand and
sample swatches have been submitted for Customs' examination.
The articles at issue consist of two styles of denier woven
nylon coated with polyurethane plastic and imported in 60 inch
The first sample (Sample 1) is a black colored, woven 420
denier nylon packcloth, with a thread count of 60 x 38. The
weights, in oz./sq. yd. are as follows: base fabric -- 4.90 oz.,
coating -- 1.27 oz. for a total weight of 6.17 ounces. The
percentage of coating attributed to the total weight of the
article is 20.58 percent.
The second sample (Sample 2) is a light yellow, woven 210
denier nylon oxford cloth with a thread count of 60 x 55. the
specification weights are as follows: base fabric -- 3.30 oz.,
coating 1.12 oz. for a total weight of 4.42 ounces. The
percentage of coating attributable to the total weight of the
article is 25.34 percent.
- 2 -
Whether the fabrics are coated with polyurethane such that
they are classifiable under heading 5903 of the Harmonized Tariff
Schedule of the United States Annotated (HTSUSA)?
LAW AND ANALYSIS:
Classification of merchandise under the HTSUSA is in
accordance with the General Rules of Interpretation (GRI's),
taken in order. GRI 1 provides that classification shall be in
accordance with the terms of the headings and any relevant
section or chapter notes. Where goods cannot be classified
solely on the basis of GRI 1, and if the headings and legal notes
do not otherwise require, the remaining GRI's may applied in the
order of their appearance.
Heading 5903, HTSUSA, covers textile fabrics impregnated,
coated, covered or laminated with plastics. Note 2(a)(1),
Chapter 59, sets forth that heading 5903 includes all coated
fabrics regardless of the weight per square meter or nature of
the plastic material, so long as the plastic component can be
seen with the naked eye. Accordingly, Customs must initially
examine coated fabrics with the naked eye alone. Only when such
examination suggests the presence of coating is it then within
Customs' discretion to examine the fabric under magnification.
See HRL 082644 of March 2, 1990.
In the instant analysis, we need not resort to magnification
as it is apparent upon examination that Sample 1 is coated with
plastic. This is determined by comparing the coated fabric with
the uncoated material. We note that in the case of the coated
fabric, all of the interstices have been filled with polyurethane
so as to leave no visible gaps in the weave of the fabric. The
plastic coating is visible to the naked eye and therefore Sample
1 is properly classifiable under heading 5903, HTSUSA.
Upon initial examination of Sample 2, plastic coating is not
discernable with the naked eye. Moreover, when the above method
of examination is applied to Sample 2, there are noticeable gaps
in the fabric's weave where plastic has not occluded the
interstices. Sample 2 fails to meet the standard mandated by
Note 2(a)(1) to Chapter 59 inasmuch as plastic coating is not
discernable to the naked eye. Accordingly, Sample 2 is not
considered coated for tariff purposes and does not fall within
the provisions of heading 5903, HTSUSA. Sample 2 is properly
classifiable under heading 5407, HTSUSA, which provides for woven
fabrics of synthetic filament yarn.
- 3 -
Sample 1 is classifiable under subheading 5903.20.2500,
HTSUSA, under the provision for textile fabrics impregnated,
coated, covered or laminated with plastics, other than those of
heading 5902, with polyurethane, of man-made fibers, other,
other, and are dutiable at a rate of 8.5 percent ad valorem. The
textile category is 229.
Sample 2 is classifiable under subheading 5407.42.0030,
HTSUSA, under the provision for woven fabrics of synthetic
filament yarn ...; other woven fabrics containing 85 percent or
more by weight of filaments of nylon or other polyamides. The
fabrics are dutiable at the rate of 17 percent ad valorem and are
subject to textile quota category 620.
The designated textile and apparel category may be
subdivided into parts. If so, visa and quota requirements
applicable to the subject merchandise may be affected. Since
part categories are the result of international bilateral
agreements which are subject to frequent renegotiations and
changes, to obtain the most current information available, we
suggest you check, close to the time of shipment, the Status
Report on Current Import Quotas (Restraint Levels), an internal
issuance of the U.S. Customs Service, which is available for
inspection at your local Customs office.
Due to the changeable nature of the statistical annotation
(the ninth and tenth digits of the classification) and the
restraint (quota/visa) categories, you should contact your local
Customs office prior to importation of this merchandise to
determine the current status of any import restraints or
John Durant, Director
Commercial Rulings Division