Mr. Steven B. Zisser
Zisser Customs Law Group
2297 Niels Bohr Court, Ste. 114
San Diego, CA 92154
RE: The tariff classification and status under the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA), of LCD color televisions from Mexico; Article 509
Dear Mr. Zisser:
In your letter dated August 3, 2010, on behalf of ADI Systems de Mexico, S.A. de C.V., you requested a ruling on the status of LCD color televisions from Mexico under the NAFTA.
The subject merchandise, based on the submitted information, is LCD color televisions of various screen sizes ranging from 15 inches to 65 inches. These televisions, which do not incorporate any video recording or reproducing apparatus, are manufactured in Mexico from non-originating Chinese components consisting of the LCD subassembly and the main board, which are imported separately into Mexico in different shipments at different times.
When imported into Mexico the LCD subassembly is stated to be composed of the LCD panel, the front bezel, the back cover, the power board assembly, the wire harnesses, and the speakers. The LCD subassembly, which does not contain a tuner or a main board, cannot receive or process a broadcast television signal or any other type of signal.
The main board, when imported into Mexico, is stated to contain all television control elements, including a television tuner and all audio and video components; furthermore, the main board, which does not have a power supply or a display screen, contains all of the components enumerated in Additional U.S. Note 9 to chapter 85, HTSUS.
In Mexico the LCD subassembly is disassembled in such a manner to allow the main board to be incorporated into the LCD subassembly, with the proper cable connections and other operations being performed in assembling this merchandise. In this manner, the components are further manufactured to produce a functioning LCD television.
The applicable tariff provision for these LCD televisions will be 8528.72.72, Harmonized Tariff Schedule of the United States (HTSUS), which provides for Monitors and projectors, not incorporating television reception apparatus; reception apparatus for television, whether or not incorporating radio-broadcast receivers or sound or video recording or reproducing apparatus: Reception apparatus for television, whether or not incorporating radio-broadcast receivers or sound or video recording or reproducing apparatus: Other, color: With a flat panel screen: Other: Other. The general rate of duty will be 5 percent ad valorem.
Duty rates are provided for your convenience and are subject to change. The text of the most recent HTSUS and the accompanying duty rates are provided on World Wide Web at http://www.usitc.gov/tata/hts/.
General Note 12(b), HTSUS, sets forth the criteria for determining whether a good is originating under the NAFTA. General Note 12(b), HTSUS, (19 U.S.C. § 1202) states, in pertinent part, that
For the purposes of this note, goods imported into the customs territory of the United States are eligible for the tariff treatment and quantitative limitations set forth in the tariff schedule as “goods originating in the territory of a NAFTA party” only if--
(i) they are goods wholly obtained or produced entirely in the territory of Canada, Mexico and/or the United States; or
(ii) they have been transformed in the territory of Canada, Mexico and/or the United States so that—
(A) except as provided in subdivision (f) of this note, each of the non-originating materials used in the production of such goods undergoes a change in tariff classification described in subdivisions (r), (s) and (t) of this note or the rules set forth therein, or
(B) the goods otherwise satisfy the applicable requirements of subdivisions (r), (s) and (t) where no change in tariff classification is required, and the goods satisfy all other requirements of this note.
Based on the facts provided, the merchandise described above qualifies for NAFTA preferential treatment, because it will meet the requirements of HTSUS General Note 12(b)(ii)(A). Moreover, based on the information submitted, the non-originating components will undergo the appropriate change in tariff classification, as required by HTSUS General Note 12 (t)/85.91(H), which reads: “A change to other reception apparatus for television of subheading 8528.72 from incomplete or unfinished reception apparatus for television (including assemblies for reception apparatus consisting of all the parts specified in chapter rule 3 to chapter 85 plus a power supply), not incorporating a cathode-ray tube, flat panel screen or similar display, of subheading 8528.72 or any other heading.” These LCD color televisions will therefore be entitled to a free rate of duty under the NAFTA upon compliance with all applicable laws, regulations, and agreements.
This ruling is being issued under the provisions of Part 181 of the Customs Regulations (19 C.F.R. 181).
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 Lisa Cariello at (646) 733-3014.
Should you wish to request an administrative review of this ruling, submit a copy of this ruling and all relevant facts and arguments within 30 days of the date of this letter, to the Director, Commercial Rulings Division, Headquarters, U.S. Customs and Border Protection, Regulations & Rulings, 799 9th Street N.W. - 7th floor, Washington, DC 20229-1177.
Robert B. Swierupski
National Commodity Specialist Division