Mr. Abel Medina
Parker & Company
P.O. Box 271
4694 Coffee Port Road
Brownsville, TX 78521
RE: The tariff classification of anti-shoplifting security tags from Mexico.
Dear Mr. Medina:
In your letter dated August 18, 1994, on behalf of Asset Protection, Inc., you requested a tariff classification ruling.
The two samples submitted with your request are used as anti-shoplifting devices. Both are designed to be secured to clothing. The ink tag consists of a plastic shell in which ink is encased. If the tag is forcibly removed, the shell breaks and the ink stains the clothing.
The electronic tag contains an inductive coil that is tuned to a certain frequency. When passed through two antennas that are set to a selected frequency, the signal is picked up and an alarm is triggered.
The applicable tariff provision for the ink tag will be 3926.90.9590, Harmonized Tariff Schedule of the United States Annotated (HTSUSA), which provides for other articles of plastics, other. The general rate of duty will be 5.3 percent ad valorem.
The applicable tariff provision for the electronic tag will be 8531.90.8000, HTSUSA, which provides for electric sound or visual signaling apparatus, other than those of heading 8512 or 8530...parts, other. The general rate of duty will be 2.7 percent ad valorem.
You have also requested a ruling on the parts which are used to fasten the tags to the clothing, when imported separately from the tags. Your inquiry does not provide enough information for us to give a classification ruling on these parts. Your request for a classification ruling should include a sample of each of the parts and should identify the material from which the pins, tacks or nails are made.
You have also requested a ruling on whether the individual tags must be marked with the country of origin. The marking statute, section 304, Tariff Act of 1930, as amended (19 U.S.C. 1304), provides that, unless excepted, every article of foreign origin (or its container) imported into the U.S. shall be marked in a conspicuous place as legibly, indelibly and permanently as the nature of the article (or its container) will permit, in such a manner as to indicate to the ultimate purchaser in the U.S. the English name of the country of origin of the article.
Part 134, Customs Regulations (19 CFR Part 134), implements the country of origin marking requirements and exceptions of 19 U.S.C. 1304. Section 134.41(b), Customs Regulations (19 CFR 134.41(b)), mandates that the ultimate purchaser in the U.S. must be able to find the marking easily and read it without strain. Section 134.1(d) defines the ultimate purchaser as generally the last person in the U.S. who will receive the article in the form in which it was imported. In this case, the ultimate purchaser of the tags is the retail store which purchases the security devices for attachment to its merchandise.
An article is excepted from marking under 19 U.S.C. 1304 (a)(3)(D) and section 134.32(d), Customs Regulations (19 CFR 134.32(d)), if the marking of a container of such article will reasonably indicate the origin of such article. Accordingly, the tags may be excepted from individual marking provided that they are imported in containers which are clearly marked with the country of origin, and provided the district director at the port of entry is satisfied that the tags will reach the ultimate purchaser in the United States in the original marked unopened containers.
This ruling is being issued under the provisions of Part 177 of the Customs Regulations (19 CFR 177).
A copy of this ruling letter should be attached to the entry documents filed at the time this merchandise is imported. If the documents have been filed without a copy, this ruling should be brought to the attention of the Customs officer handling the transaction.
Jean F. Maguire
New York Seaport