CLA-2-49:S:N1:234 875693

Mr. William C. Nicoll
13534 Featherstone Drive
St. Louis, Missouri 63131

RE: The tariff classification of tourist literature (travel guide books) and printed metal plaques (pictures) from the United Kingdom.

Dear Mr. Nicoll:

In your letter dated June 19, 1992, you requested a tariff classification ruling. Two samples were submitted and will be returned as requested.

The first item is a 234-page hardbound printed book entitled "Orion Hotels and Golf Courses Traveller's Guide." It contains illustrated text concerning golf courses, accommodations and tourist attractions throughout England, Scotland, Wales and Ireland. It also includes a number of full-page advertisements.

The applicable subheading for the traveller's guide will be 4911.10.0060, Harmonized Tariff Schedule of the United States (HTS), which provides for other (than certain enumerated) printed matter...: tourist and other literature...principally with respect to places, travel facilities or educational opportunities outside the customs territory of the United States. The rate of duty will be free. (This free rate will apply regardless of whether the books are sold to retail outlets or distributed as gifts.)

The second item is a "stainless steel plaque." It is an 8 x 12 inch sheet of stainless steel which has been printed, in black, with a picture (in this case, a streetscape). The sample sheet is affixed to a backing board mounted in a wooden picture frame. You indicate that the plaques will be shipped either finished (like the sample), unassembled, or without backings and frames. You also mention the possibility of substituting aluminum for the steel.

The applicable subheading for the printed pictorial plaques (either steel or aluminum) will be 4911.91.4040, HTS, which provides for other (than certain enumerated) printed pictures. The rate of duty, under any of the above shipping circumstances, will be 3.1%. There are no license requirements or other import restrictions on printed steel or aluminum products of this kind.

In response to your other questions, we offer the following information, which is of a general nature and pertains to all types of merchandise imported into the United States:

Packing costs are included in dutiable values, but international transportation and insurance charges are not.

Any "assist" must be disclosed on the commercial invoice, and must be included in the dutiable value. The definition of the term "assist" is set forth in section 152.102 of the Customs Regulations, a copy of which is attached for your reference.

Sales taxes are not payable upon importation of merchandise. However, liabilities for such taxes may ensue upon its subsequent disposition or sale. Because these taxes are under the jurisdiction of individual state and local authorities, we are unable to provide information on rates, conditions, etc. This ruling is being issued under the provisions of Section 177 of the Customs Regulations (19 C.F.R. 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
Area Director
New York Seaport