Tariff Classification Advance Ruling
Titan TE-BXC30 geogrid composite

Applicant

Ms. Leanne Slatcher
Titan Environmental Containment Ltd.
777 Quest Blvd.
Ile des Chenes, MB
R0A 0T0

Date of issuance of ruling: December 17, 2015

This is in response to a request submitted on your behalf by Kuehne & Nagel Limited for an advance ruling on the tariff classification of Titan TE-BXC30 geogrid composite. This product is manufactured and exported by Taian Modern Plastics Co. Ltd. of Shandong, China.

TRS Number: 272803
Classification Number: 3926.90.99.90
Effective Date: December 17, 2015

Product Description

This product is commonly called a composite geogrid. The product is composed of a black, flexible, biaxial grid (pattern measuring 1.5 inches per grid square) that is fabricated from a plastic sheet of virgin polypropylene. This sheet has been further worked by a punching and drawing process resulting in a structured bi-directional oriented monolithic and isotropic biaxial grid possessing integral nodes. The structured grid is then heat bonded to a non-woven needle punched polyester textile. The product is imported and sold in the same condition of a roll measuring 3.95 meters (12.95 feet) wide by 50.0 meters (164.04 feet) long.

The product is used by the construction industry for soil stabilization, sub-base reinforcement, and foundation support. The product's textile component also provides an additional feature of enhanced separation and filtration properties to keep expensive imported material from being contaminated due to migration of fines from the saturated base soils.

Analysis and Justification

Consideration was given to headings 39.20, 39.21, and 39.26 for the structured polypropylene component, and 56.03 for the non-woven polyester textile component. Due regard was also given to the relevant World Customs Organization (WCO) Explanatory Notes to the Harmonized Commodity Description and Coding System (EN) for those headings.

The product contains, in part, polypropylene material which is classified under heading 39.02 of the Customs Tariff when in primary form. Sheets of this material are found in the CT headings of 39.20 and 39.21. However, the WCO EN for these headings directs that further worked plastic sheets are generally classified as articles of headings 39.18, 39.19 or 39.22 to 39.26. Therefore, this heading was excluded.

As the product consists of a combination of materials that are classifiable, in part only, under the terms of the headings 39.26 and 56.03, the product cannot be classified according to the headings or Chapter notes as directed by the General Rules for the Interpretation of the Harmonized System (GIR) Rule 1.

GIR 2(a) is not applicable to the product as it is imported in a complete or finished form.  Also, GIR 2(b) does not apply as the product consists of more than one material and is prima facie classifiable under two or more headings.

As the product consists of more than one material or substance that are classifiable under two or more  tariff headings, the classification is to be determined according to the principles of GIR 3. As each of these headings refers to only part of the materials contained in the composition, these headings are regarded as equally specific and GIR 3(a) is not applicable.

GIR 3(b) directs that composite products consisting of different materials, which cannot be classified by reference to Rule 3 (a), shall be classified as if they consisted of the material or component which gives them their essential character, insofar as this criterion is applicable.

The primary purpose of this product is the soil stabilization/reinforcement aspect which is provided by the structured biaxial polypropylene grid layer. The second layer of non-woven polyester textile serves merely to enhance the stabilization/reinforcement function and provide separation and filtration properties. The structured polypropylene component can provide this essential function by itself, and indeed, is sold separately specifically for this function. The textile component however cannot, in and of itself, provide this function.

Therefore, the essential character, by the role of the constituent material in relation to the use of the products, is the polypropylene material of heading 39.26.

Decision

Section 10 of the Customs Tariff directs that classification of imported goods shall be determined in accordance with the General Rules for the Interpretation of the Harmonized System. Section 11 of the Customs Tariff states that in interpreting the headings and subheadings, regard shall be had to the World Customs Organization's (WCO) Explanatory Notes to the Harmonized Commodity Description and Coding System.

General Interpretative Rule 1 (GIR 1) directs that titles of Sections, Chapters and sub-Chapters are provided for ease of reference only. For legal purposes, classification shall be determined according to the terms of the heading and any relative Section and Chapter Notes. Similarly, General Interpretative Rule 6 (GIR 6) directs that classification shall be determined according to the terms of those subheadings and any related Subheading Notes.

This decision rendered is in accordance with the GIR 3(b), and Canadian Rule 1, as well as the WCO EN for headings 39.20 and 39.21. The Titan TE-BXC30 geogrid composite is classified under tariff classification 3926.90.99.90.

Legislative/Administrative References

This ruling has been issued under paragraph 43.1(1)(c) of the Customs Act and will be honoured by the CBSA for future importations of the products specified, provided the material facts and circumstances remain as originally presented; all conditions in the ruling have been met; the ruling has not been modified, revoked, revised, or cancelled; and the Customs Tariff legislation has not changed. Should there be a change in the material facts or circumstances pertaining to the goods, you must notify the CBSA as soon as possible.  You may request that the advance ruling be modified or revoked as of the date of the change.

Importers should quote the advance ruling number at the time of importation in either the description field of the B3 entry document or on the Canada Customs Invoice. Exporters or producers should quote the advance ruling number on the Certificate of Origin or commercial invoice accompanying the goods.

Should you disagree with this advance ruling, you may file a dispute notice under subsection 60(2) of the Customs Act within 90 days of the date of issuance. Please see the procedures outlined in Appendix C of the CBSA's Memorandum D11-11-3, Advance Rulings for Tariff Classification.

All Memoranda referenced in this letter may be accessed on the CBSA website.

This advance ruling is considered 'reason to believe' for the purposes of section 32.2 of the Customs Act and the CBSA's Administrative Monetary Penalty System, described in Memorandum D22-1-1.

Consent to the Public Release of the Advance Ruling

As per your consent statement, we will release this advance ruling to the public, in both official languages, in accordance with the procedures described in Memorandum D11‑11‑3.

CBSA Contact

Mark Grant
Manager, Tariff Policy Unit 'B'
Trade Policy Division
Headquarters, Ottawa

File Number

C-2015-007489

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