Ms. Eileen Family
5101 South Broad Street
Philadelphia, PA 19112
RE: The tariff classification of tiles from China
Dear Ms. Family:
In your letter dated May 9, 2019, you requested a tariff classification ruling on behalf of your client, Island Stone.
The merchandise under consideration is a wall tile, item number FO3CIRR and a floor tile, item number HIS92-04. Samples was submitted with your ruling request and was forwarded to the Customs and Border Protection Laboratory for analysis. This analysis has been completed.
The wall tile, item number FO3CIRR, is rectangular with a raised, diamond-shaped, notched surface, and measures approximately 36.3 centimeters long by 9.8 cm wide wide by 1.7 centimeters thick at its widest points. In an email to this office on May 16, 2019, you indicated that these wall tiles are suitable for interior and exterior use, and are affixed to surfaces using a mortar bed and grout.
The floor tile, item number HIS92-04, consists of variously sized and shaped flat, rounded tiles on a mesh backing, which measure approximately .5 centimeters in thickness. The largest tiles exceed 7 centimeters across at their widest points. In an email to this office on May 16, 2019, you indicated that these floor tiles are suitable for interior and exterior use, and are affixed to surfaces using a mortar bed and grout.
In your ruling request, you state that the wall tile is made of concrete. However, laboratory analysis has determined that the tile is not concrete, but a mixture of quartz, cement and glass fiber. Our laboratory has confirmed that the tile consists principally of cement, with the glass fiber acting as a strengthening agent in the cement.
You further state that the floor tiles are porcelain ceramic. Chapter 69, Additional U.S. Note 5(a) defines “porcelain” as ceramic ware (other than stoneware), whether or not glazed or
decorated, having a fired white body (unless artificially colored) which will not absorb more than 0.5 percent of its weight of water and is translucent in thicknesses of several millimeters. Laboratory analysis has determined that the tiles do not meet the definition of white, and are not artificially colored. As they do not conform with the legal definition, the tiles are not porcelain ceramic. In addition, the laboratory analysis determined that the tiles have a water absorption coefficient by weight of .39%, and the tiles are glazed.
The applicable subheading for the wall tile, item number FO3CIRR, will be 6811.82.0000, Harmonized Tariff Schedule of the United States (HTSUS), which provides for “Articles of asbestos-cement, of cellulose fiber-cement or the like: not containing asbestos: Other sheets, panels, tiles and similar articles.” The general rate of duty will be free.
The applicable subheading for the floor tiles, item number HIS92-04, will be 6907.21.9011, HTSUS, which provides for “Ceramic flags and paving, hearth or wall tiles; ceramic mosaic cubes and the like, whether or not on a backing; finishing ceramics: Flags and paving, hearth or wall tiles, other than those of subheading 6907.30 and 6907.40: Of a water absorption coefficient by weight not exceeding 0.5%: Glazed: Other…Tiles, the largest surface area of which is capable of being enclosed in a square the side of which is 30 cm or less.” The rate of duty will be 8.5% 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 the World Wide Web at https://hts.usitc.gov/current.
Pursuant to U.S. Note 20 to Subchapter III, Chapter 99, HTSUS, products of China classified under subheadings 6811.82.0000 and 6907.21.9011, HTSUS, unless specifically excluded, are subject to an additional 25% percent ad valorem rate of duty. At the time of importation, you must report the Chapter 99 subheading, i.e., 9903.88.03, in addition to subheadings 6811.82.0000 and 6907.21.9011, HTSUS, listed above.
The HTSUS is subject to periodic amendment so you should exercise reasonable care in monitoring the status of goods covered by the Note cited above and the applicable Chapter 99 subheading. For background information regarding the trade remedy initiated pursuant to Section 301 of the Trade Act of 1974, you may refer to the relevant parts of the USTR and CBP websites, which are available at https://ustr.gov/issue-areas/enforcement/section-301-investigations/tariff-actions and https://www.cbp.gov/trade/remedies/301-certain-products-china respectively. 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 Nicole Sullivan at [email protected].
Steven A. Mack
National Commodity Specialist Division