CLA-2-27:RR:NC:SP:237 I84005

Mr. J. F. Chester, Esq.
Braumiller & Rodriguez, LLC
P.O. Box 1321587
Dallas, Texas 75313-1587

RE: The tariff classification of Zuata Sweet synthetic crude oil from Venezuela.

Dear Mr. Chester:

In your letter dated July 2, 2002, on behalf of ATOFINA Petrochemicals Inc., you requested a tariff classification ruling for Zuata Sweet synthetic crude oil.

An extra-heavy bituminous crude oil substance, having an API Gravity of 8oAPI, is extracted from the earth in the Orinoco Belt in Zuata, Venezuela, by mixing with a diluent (naptha) to bring it to 17oAPI, then dehydrated. At upgrading facilities the crude oil is fractioned and its sulfur and bottoms (petroleum coke) are removed. All other streams are hydrogenated and the naptha is returned to the well to extract additional crude. Except for the naptha and bottoms, all liquid fractions are recombined to form Zuata Sweet synthetic crude oil having a range of 30-32oAPI, for use as a crude oil refinery feedstock. You provided a preliminary assay report with the following specifications:

API Gravity 60oF 32.2oAPI Specific Gravity 60oF 0.8641 12.93 wt% Recovered 165-330oF 56.62 wt% Recovered 540-644oF 96.81 wt% Recovered 800-950oF Final Boiling Point 1050oF Reid Vapor Pressure 1.5psi Pour Point 5oF Viscosity at 100oF 6.5cst Sulphur wt% 0.07wt%

Zuata Sweet synthetic crude oil is classifiable in subheading 2709.00.2090, Harmonized Tariff Schedule of the United States (HTSUS), which provides for petroleum oils and oils obtained from bituminous minerals, crude: testing 25 degrees API or more: other. The duty is 10.5 cents per barrel.

This ruling is being issued under the provisions of Part 177 of the Customs Regulations (19 C.F.R. 177).

A copy of the ruling or the control number indicated above should be provided with the entry documents filed at the time this merchandise is imported. If you have any questions regarding the ruling, contact National Import Specialist Frank Cantone at 646-733-3038.


Robert B. Swierupski
Director, National Commodity
Specialist Division