CLA-2 RR:CR:GC 965540 GOB
U.S. Customs Service
150 N. Royal Street
Mobile, AL 36602
RE: Protest 1901-02-100038; Loudspeaker Voice Coils
Dear Port Director:
This is our decision regarding Protest 1901-02-100038, filed by Matsushita Electronic Components Corporation of America (“protestant”) concerning the classification, under the Harmonized Tariff Schedule of the United States (“HTSUS”), of certain loudspeaker voice coils.
The file reflects the following. The entry at issue was filed on December 7, 2000, and was liquidated on October 10, 2001. The protest was filed on January 9, 2001.
The voice coils (numerous models, including VC-SA1303, VS-SA1303, etc.) were entered under subheading 8504.50.80, HTSUS. The entry was liquidated under subheading 8518.90.80, HTSUS.
The protestant has submitted an affidavit from its chief engineer, in which he states, in pertinent part:
The voice coils in issue consist of a single coil of wire . . . The voice coils in issue are used in the manufacture of speakers for the automotive market . . . The function of the voice coil in the speaker is to produce a magnetic field when an AC current flows through it. As this AC current flows, an impedance resistance builds as the frequency increases. This increased resistance is a result from the self-induction of the voice coil design.
The voice coil includes a hollow plastic cylinder around which the coil is wrapped.
What is the classification under the HTSUS of the voice coils?
LAW AND ANALYSIS:
We note initially that the protest was timely filed under the statutory and regulatory provisions for protests, 19 U.S.C. 1514(c)(3)(A) and 19 CFR 174.12(e)(1).
Classification under the HTSUS is made in accordance with the General Rules of Interpretation (“GRI’s”). GRI 1 provides that the 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 GRI’s may then be applied.
The Harmonized Commodity Description and Coding System Explanatory Notes (“EN’s”) constitute the official interpretation of the Harmonized System at the international level. While neither legally binding nor dispositive, the EN’s provide a commentary on the scope of each heading of the HTSUS and are generally indicative of the proper interpretation of these headings. See T.D. 89-80.
The HTSUS provisions under consideration are as follows:
8504 Electrical transformers, static converters (for example, rectifiers) and inductors; parts thereof:
8504.50 Other inductors:
* * * * *
8518 . . . loudspeakers, whether or not mounted in their enclosures . . . parts thereof:
EN 85.04 provides in pertinent part as follows:
These consist essentially of a single coil of wire which, inserted in an AC circuit, limits or prevents by its self-induction the flow of the AC. They vary from small chokes used in wireless circuits, instruments, etc., to large coils often mounted in concrete, used in power circuits (e.g., for limiting the flow of current in the event of a short circuit).
Note 2 to Section XVI, HTSUS, provides in pertinent part as follows:
Subject to note 1 to this section, note 1 to chapter 84 and to note 1 to chapter 85, parts of machines (not being parts of the articles of heading 8484, 8544, 8545, 8546 or 8547) are to be classified according to the following rules:
(a) Parts which are goods included in any of the headings of chapters 84 and 85 (other than headings 8409, 8431, 8448, 8466, 8473, 8485, 8503, 8522, 8529, 8538 and 8548) are in all cases to be classified in their respective headings;
(b) Other parts, if suitable for use solely or principally with a particular kind of machine, or with a number of machines of the same heading (including a machine of heading 8479 or 8543) are to be classified with the machines of that kind or in
heading 8409, 8431, 8448, 8466, 8473, 8503, 8522, 8529 or 8538 as appropriate ...
Pursuant to Note 2(a), if the voice coils are goods of heading 8504, HTSUS (i.e., inductors), they are to be classified therein.
After a consideration of this matter, we find that the subject voice coils meet the definition of “inductors” in EN 85.04, i.e., they are a single coil of wire which, when inserted in an AC circuit, limits or prevents by its self-induction the flow of the AC. Therefore, we find that the voice coils are described in heading 8504, HTSUS. Accordingly, pursuant to Note 2 to Section XVI, HTSUS, they are provided for in heading 8504, HTSUS, and are classified in subheading 8504.50.80, HTSUS, as: “Electrical transformers, static converters (for example, rectifiers) and inductors; parts thereof:. . . Other inductors: . . . Other.”
The voice coils are classified in subheading 8504.50.80, HTSUS, as: “Electrical transformers, static converters (for example, rectifiers) and inductors; parts thereof:. . . Other inductors: . . . Other.”
You are instructed to GRANT the protest.
In accordance with Section 3A(11)(b) of Customs Directive 099 3550-065, dated August 4, 1993, Subject: Revised Protest Directive, you are to mail this decision, together with the Customs Form 19, to the protestant no later than 60 days from the date of this letter. Any reliquidation of the entry in accordance with the decision must be accomplished prior to mailing of the decision. Sixty days from the date of the decision the Office of Regulations
and Rulings will make the decision available to Customs personnel, and to the public on the Customs Home Page on the World Wide Web at www.customs.treas.gov, by means of the Freedom of Information Act, and other methods of public distribution.
Myles B. Harmon, Acting Director
Commercial Rulings Division