COMMITTEE FOR THE IMPLEMENTATION OF TEXTILE AGREEMENTS

Consolidation and Amendment of Export Visa Requirements to Include the Electronic Visa Information System for Certain Cotton, Wool, Man-Made Fiber, Silk Blend and Other Vegetable Fiber Textiles and Textile Products Produced or Manufactured in Indonesia

July 7, 1997.

AGENCY: Committee for the Implementation of Textile Agreements (CITA).


ACTION: Issuing a directive to the Commissioner of Customs consolidating and amending visa requirements.

EFFECTIVE DATE: August 1, 1997.


FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Janet Heinzen, International Trade Specialist, Office of Textiles and Apparel, U.S. Department of Commerce, (202) 482-4212.


SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:


Authority:
Executive Order 11651 of March 3, 1972, as amended; section 204 of the Agricultural Act of 1956, as amended (7 U.S.C. 1854).



In exchange of notes dated May 23, 1997 and June 23, 1997, the Governments of the United States and Indonesia agreed to amend the existing visa arrangement for cotton, wool, man-made fiber, silk blend and other vegetable fiber textiles and textile products, produced or manufactured in Indonesia and exported on and after August 1, 1997. The amended arrangement consolidates existing provisions and new provisions for the Electronic Visa Information System (ELVIS). In addition to the ELVIS requirements, shipments will continue to be accompanied by an original visa stamped on the front of the original commercial invoice issued by the Government of Indonesia.

In the letter published below, the Chairman of CITA directs the Commissioner of Customs to amend the existing visa requirements for textile products, produced or manufactured in Indonesia and exported on and after August 1, 1997.

A description of the textile and apparel categories in terms of HTS numbers is available in the CORRELATION: Textile and Apparel Categories with the Harmonized Tariff Schedule of the United States (see Federal Register notice 62 FR 66263, published on December 17, 1996). Also see 52 FR 20134, published on May 29, 1987.Interested persons are advised to take all necessary steps to ensure that textile products entered into the United States for consumption, or withdrawn from warehouse for consumption, will meet the visa requirements set forth in the letter published below to the Commissioner of Customs.

Troy H. Cribb,
Chairman, Committee for the Implementation of Textile Agreements.


Committee for the Implementation of Textile Agreements
July 7, 1997.


Commissioner of Customs,
Department of the Treasury, Washington, DC 20229.


Dear Commissioner: This directive amends, but does not cancel, the directive issued to you on May 19, 1987, as amended, by the Chairman, Committee for the Implementation of Textile Agreements, that directed you to prohibit entry of certain cotton, wool, manmade fiber, silk blend and other vegetable fiber textiles and textile products, produced or manufactured in Indonesia for which the Government of Indonesia has not issued an appropriate export visa.

Under the terms of section 204 of the Agricultural Act of 1956, as amended (7 U.S.C. 1854); pursuant to a the Export Visa Arrangement, effected by exchange of notes dated May 23, 1997 and June 23, 1997, between the Governments of the United States and Indonesia; and in accordance with the provisions of Executive Order 11651 of March 3, 1972, as amended, you are directed to prohibit, effective on August 1, 1997, entry into the Customs territory of the United States (i.e., the 50 states, the District of Columbia and the Commonwealth of Puerto Rico) for consumption and withdrawal from warehouse for consumption of cotton, wool, man-made fiber, silk blend and other vegetable fiber textiles and textile products in Categories 200-239, 300-369, 400-469, 600-670 and 800-899, including part categories and merged categories; but not Categories 353/354 and 653/654, produced or manufactured in Indonesia and exported on and after August 1, 1997 for which the Government of Indonesia has not issued an appropriate export visa and Electronic Visa Information System (ELVIS) transmission fully described below. Should additional categories, part categories or merged categories be added to or changed from those subject to import quotas under the Bilateral Agreement and notified in accordance with the Uruguay Round Agreement on Textiles and Clothing, the entire category or categories shall be automatically included in the coverage of the Visa Arrangement. Merchandise exported on or after the date the category is added to, or changed in, the Agreement, or becomes subject to import quotas, shall require a visa and ELVIS transmission.

A visa must accompany each commercial shipment of the aforementioned textile products. A circular stamped marking in blue ink will appear on the front of the original textile export commercial invoice. The original visa shall not be stamped on duplicate copies of the invoice. The original invoice with the original visa stamp will be required to enter the shipment into the United States. Duplicates of the invoice and/or visa may not be used for this purpose.

Each visa stamp shall include the following information:

1. The visa number. The visa number shall be in the standard nine digit letter format, beginning with one numeric digit for the last digit of the year of export, followed by the two character alpha country code specified by the International Organization for Standardization (ISO) (the code for Indonesia is ``ID''), and a six digit numeric serial number identifying the shipment; e.g., 7ID123456.

2. The date of issuance. The date of issuance shall be the day, month and year on which the visa was issued.

3. The original signature of the issuing official of the Government of Indonesia.

4. The correct category(s), merged category(s), part category(s), quantity(s) and unit(s) of quantity in the shipment as set forth in the U.S. Department of Commerce Correlation and in the Harmonized Tariff Schedules of the United States Annotated (HTSUSA) shall be reported in the spaces provided within the visa stamp (e.g., ``Cat. 340-510 DOZ''; ``Cat. 369-S510KG''; ``Cat. 331/631-510DPR''; ``Cat.317/617/326-510M2''; ``Cat.443-510NO'').

Quantities must be stated in whole numbers. Decimals or fractions will not be accepted. Merged category quota merchandise may be accompanied by either the appropriate merged category visa or the correct category visa corresponding to the actual shipment (e.g., quota Category 347/348 may be visaed as ``Category 347/348'' or if the shipment consists solely of Category 347 merchandise, the shipment may be visaed as ``Category 347,'' but not as ``Category 348'').

U.S. Customs shall not permit entry if the shipment does not have a visa, or if the visa number, date of issuance, signature, category, quantity or units of quantity are missing, incorrect, illegible, or have been crossed out or altered in any way. If the quantity indicated on the visa is less than that of the shipment, entry shall not be permitted. If the quantity indicated on the visa is more than that of the shipment, entry shall be permitted and only the amount entered shall be charged to any applicable quota.

If the visa is not acceptable then a new visa must be obtained from the Indonesian Government or a visa waiver issued by the U.S. Department of Commerce at the request of the Indonesian Government and presented to the U.S. Customs Service before any portion of the shipment will be released. The waiver, if used, only waives the requirement to present a visa with the shipment. It does not waive the quota requirement. Visa waivers will only be issued for classification purposes or for one time special purpose shipments that are not part of an ongoing commercial enterprise.


If the visaed invoice is deficient, the U.S. Customs Service will not return the original document after entry or attempted entry, but will provide the importer a certified copy of that visaed invoice for use in obtaining a new correct original visaed invoice or a visa waiver.

If a shipment from Indonesia has been allowed entry into the commerce of the United States with either an incorrect visa or no visa, and redelivery is requested but cannot be made, the shipment will be charged to the correct category limit whether or not a replacement visa or visa waiver is provided.

ELVIS Requirements:

A. Each ELVIS message will include the following information:
i. The visa number. The visa number shall be in the standard nine digit letter format, beginning with one numeric digit for the last digit of the year of export, followed by the two character alpha country code specified by the International Organization for Standardization (ISO) (the code for Indonesia is ``ID''), and a six digit numerical serial number identifying the shipment; e.g., 7ID123456.

ii. The date of issuance. The date of issuance shall be the day, month and year on which the visa was issued.

iii. The correct category(s), merged category(s), part category(s), quantity(s) and unit(s) of quantity in the shipment as set forth in the U.S. Department of Commerce Correlation and in the Harmonized Tariff Schedule of the United States, Annotated, or successor documents.

iv. The manufacturer ID number (MID). The MID shall begin with ``ID,'' followed by the first three characters from each of the first two words of the name of the manufacturers, followed by the largest number on the address line up to the first four digits, followed by three letters from the city name.

B. Entry of a shipment shall not be permitted:

i. if an ELVIS transmission has not been received for the shipment from Indonesia;

ii. if the ELVIS transmission for that shipment is missing any of the following:
a. visa number
b. category or part category
c. quantity
d. unit of measure
e. date of issuance
f. manufacturer ID number;

iii. if the ELVIS transmission for the shipment does not match the information supplied by the importer, or the Customs broker acting as an agent on behalf of the importer, with regard to any of the following:

a. visa number
b. category or part category
c. unit of measure;


iv. if the quantity being entered is greater than the quantity transmitted; or,

v. if the visa number has previously been used, except in the case of a split shipment.

C. A new, correct ELVIS transmission from the country of origin is required before a shipment that has been denied entry for one of the circumstances in B.i-v will be released.

D. A new, correct ELVIS transmission from the country of origin is required for entries made using a visa waiver under the procedure described above. Visa waivers will only be considered for classification purposes or for one time special purpose shipments that are not part of an ongoing commercial enterprise.

E. Shipments will not be released for forty-eight hours in the event of a system failure. If system failure exceeds forty-eight hours, for the remaining period of the system failure the U.S. Customs Service will release shipments on the basis of the paper visaed document.


F. If a shipment from Indonesia is allowed entry into the commerce of the United States with an incorrect visa, no visa, an incorrect ELVIS transmission, or no ELVIS transmission, and redelivery is requested but cannot be made, the shipment will be charged to the correct category limit whether or not a replacement visa or waiver is provided or a new ELVIS message is transmitted.

G. The Indonesian Government authorities may request a report containing information on visa utilization from the U.S. Customs Service as frequently as needed. This report will contain:
a. visa number
b. category number
c. quantity charged to quota
d. unit of measuree. entry number
f. entry line number.

Shipments Not Requiring Visas:

Merchandise imported for the personal use of the importer and not for resale, regardless of value, and properly marked commercial sample shipments valued at U.S. $250 or less do not require a visa or an ELVIS transmission for entry and shall not be charged to Agreement levels.
Other Provisions:

Except as provided in the paragraph above, any shipment which requires a visa but which is not accompanied by a valid and correct visa and ELVIS transmission in accordance with the foregoing provisions, shall be denied entry by the Government of the United States of America unless the Government of Indonesia authorizes the entry and any charges to the Agreement levels.
The visa stamp remains unchanged.

The actions taken concerning the Government of Indonesia with respect to imports of textiles and textile products in the foregoing categories have been determined by the Committee for the Implementation of Textile Agreements to involve foreign affairs functions of the United States. Therefore, these directions to the Commissioner of Customs, which are necessary for the implementation of such actions, fall within the foreign affairs exception to the rulemaking provisions of 5 U.S.C. 553(a)(1). This letter will be published in the Federal Register.

Sincerely,

Troy H. Cribb,
Chairman, Committee for the Implementation of Textile Agreements.

[FR Doc. 97-0000 Filed 0-00-97; 8:45 am]
BILLING CODE 3510-DR-F