The Mooney Law Firm
2717 Neuchatel Drive
Tallahassee, FL 32303
RE: The tariff classification and applicability of trade remedies of a photovoltaic generator from Taiwan
Dear Ms. Liang:
In your letter dated August 2, 2021 you requested a tariff classification ruling on behalf of your client, Mega Sunergy Co. Ltd.
The merchandise under consideration is described as a solar panel for a wireless outdoor camera (generator). The subject generator is mounted within a plastic enclosure, with an outer bezel framing the photovoltaic cells, and features a permanently attached 4 m long output cable with a micro-USB connector. The photovoltaic surface area is 90 mm by 165 mm as measured from the inside of the bezel edges. Internally, the generator does not incorporate static converting apparatus or a battery. Based on the provided specifications, it has a maximum output of 5.57 V and 2 Watts. You have provided a sample of the generator, which is in a retail box along with a mounting plate and hardware.
We would note that in NY ruling N320508, this product was classified under subheading 8501.31.8010, Harmonized Tariff Schedule of the United States (HTSUS). In the current inquiry, you request a determination of an exclusion to the Solar 201 safeguard measures pertaining to photovoltaic generators.
The Solar 201 safeguard was implemented in accordance with Presidential Proclamation 9693, dated January 23, 2018, which was promulgated in pursuant to Section 201 of the Trade Act of 1974, as amended (19 U.S.C. §2252). See Fed. Reg. Vol. 83, No. 17 (Jan. 25, 2018). The Solar 201 safeguard establishes a tariff-rate quota and additional duties on imports of CSPV “cells” and “modules.” In particular, the proclamation calls for amendment of Chapter 99, Subchapter III, HTSUS, to create subheadings 9903.45.21 and 9903.45.22, which apply to CSPV cells, and 9903.45.25, which applies to CSPV modules. The proclamation also calls for amendment of Chapter 99, Subchapter III, to create a new legal note, Note 18, to define the products classifiable in subheadings 9903.45.21 to 9903.45.25 and set forth the additional rates of duties to be applied to these products. These amendments to Chapter 99 went into effect on February 7, 2018, and will remain in effect until February 6, 2022.
In your letter, you state that the additional rates of duty are not applicable to the subject generator since it is excluded from the scope of subheading 9903.45.25, HTSUS, because the generator satisfies the physical description pursuant to Note 18 (c)(iii)(8) to Chapter 99, HTSUS. We agree.
Note 18 to Subchapter III of Chapter 99 provides, in relevant part, as follows:
(iii) Subheading 9903.45.25 shall not cover the following goods, whether or not separate statistical reporting numbers therefor may appear in chapters 1 through 97 of the tariff schedule:
(8) 4 watt or less solar panels, each with a length or diameter of 70 mm or more but not over 235 mm, with a surface area not exceeding 539 cm2, and not exceeding 16 volts, provided that no such panel with these characteristics shall contain an internal battery or external computer peripheral ports at the time of entry;
To qualify for the exclusion set forth in Chapter 99, Subchapter III, Note 18(c)(iii)(8), certain enumerated physical characteristics must be present in the product at issue. As stated previously, the subject generator has a maximum output of 2 Watts and measures 90 mm by 165 mm for a photovoltaic surface area of 148.5 cm2. Furthermore, there is no battery or control/charging circuitry. While the output cable does incorporate a micro-USB connector, in our view, that is merely a convenient connector format used to attach the generator to the outdoor camera to supply power and no signals are input/output to or from the generator.
Based on the foregoing, the photovoltaic generator at issue satisfies the exemption set out in Note 18(c)(iii)(8) to Chapter 99 and is not subject to the Solar 201 safeguards.
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.
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 Karl Moosbrugger at [email protected]
Steven A. Mack
National Commodity Specialist Division