290 Basil Avenue
Morgan Hill, CA 95037
RE: The tariff classification of evaporation materials from China
Dear Mr. Sridhar:
In your letter dated September 26, 2019, you requested a tariff classification ruling. Representative photos and analysis certificates were included in your submission.
The products under consideration are 5 different high purity/high-density metals for use in the semiconductor and optical industries. Imported in various shapes and sizes, you indicate that this merchandise will be utilized in physical vapor deposition (PVD) tools to deposit thin films by electron beam or thermal high vacuum evaporation techniques.
The subject products are as follows:
1.) 99.999% pure aluminum pellets and 99.999% aluminum conical-shaped “slugs”
2.) 99.95% pure chromium “cube-like” pieces; 99.95% pure chromium pieces/fragments and 99.95% pure chromium conical-shaped “slugs”
3.) 99.99% pure nickel pellets
4.) 99.99% pure titanium pellets
5.) 99.99% pure copper pellets
In an email to our office, you suggested classification of the above merchandise in subheading 8543.90.1200, Harmonized Tariff Schedule of the United States (HTSUS), which provides for Electrical machines and apparatus, having individual functions, not specified or included elsewhere in this chapter; parts thereof: Of physical vapor deposition apparatus of subheading 8543.70. We disagree.
Classification is governed by the principles set forth in the General Rules of Interpretation (GRIs). GRI 1 states, in pertinent part, that the classification of goods shall be determined according to the terms of the headings and any relative section or chapter notes. Further, Additional US Rule of Interpretation 1(c) states, in pertinent part, that a provision for parts or parts and accessories shall not prevail over a specific provision for such part and accessory. Though these goods may be used in conjunction with physical vapor deposition apparatus, as described in the requested subheading, they are more specifically provided for elsewhere in the tariff. As such, they are excluded from classification under heading 8543.
The applicable subheading for the aluminum pellets and slugs will be 7601.10.6030, HTSUS, which provides for Unwrought aluminum: Aluminum, not alloyed: Other: Of greater than 99.8 percent aluminum. The general rate of duty will be free.
The applicable subheading for the chromium pieces and slugs will be 8112.21.0000, HTSUS, which provides for Beryllium, chromium, germanium, vanadium, gallium, hafnium, indium, niobium (columbium), rhenium and thallium, and articles of these metals, including waste and scrap: Chromium: Unwrought; powders. The general rate of duty will be 3 percent ad valorem.
The applicable subheading for the nickel pellets will be 7502.10.0000, HTSUS, which provides for Unwrought Nickel: Nickel, not alloyed. The general rate of duty will be free.
The applicable subheading for the titanium pellets will be 8108.20.0095, HTSUS, which provides for Titanium and articles thereof, including waste and scrap: Unwrought titanium; powders: Other: Other. The general rate of duty will be 15 percent ad valorem.
The applicable subheading for the copper pellets will be 7403.19.0000, HTSUS, which provides for Refined copper and copper alloys, unwrought (other than master alloys of heading 7405): Refined copper: Other. The general rate of duty will be 1 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.
On March 8, 2018, Presidential proclamations 9704 and 9705 imposed additional tariffs and quotas on a number of steel and aluminum mill products. Exemptions have been made on a temporary basis for some countries. Quantitative limitations or quotas may apply for certain exempted countries and can also be found in Chapter 99. Additional duties for steel of 25 percent and for aluminum of 10 percent are reflected in Chapter 99, subheading 9903.80.01 for steel and subheading 9903.85.01 for aluminum. Products classified under subheading 7601.10.6030, HTSUS, may be subject to additional duties or quota. At the time of importation, you must report the Chapter 99 subheading applicable to your product classification in addition to the Chapter 72, 73 or 76 subheading listed above. The Proclamations are subject to periodic amendment of the exclusions, so you should exercise reasonable care in monitoring the status of goods covered by the Proclamations and the applicable Chapter 99 subheadings.
Pursuant to U.S. Note 20 to Subchapter III, Chapter 99, HTSUS, products of China classified under subheadings 7502.10.0000, 7403.19.0000 and 8108.20.0095, 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 7502.10.0000, 7403.19.0000 and 8108.20.0095, HTSUS, listed above.
Pursuant to U.S. Note 20 to Subchapter III, Chapter 99, HTSUS, products of China classified under subheading 7601.10.6030, HTSUS, unless specifically excluded, are subject to an additional 15 percent ad valorem rate of duty. At the time of importation, you must report the Chapter 99 subheading, i.e., 9903.88.15, in addition to subheading 7601.10.6030, 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 aluminum or copper products, contact National Import Specialist (NIS) Angelia Amerson at [email protected]. If you have any questions regarding the remaining products, contact NIS April Cutuli at [email protected].
Steven A. Mack
National Commodity Specialist Division