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Classification Decisions Adopted, Considered by WCO Harmonized System Committee

Tuesday, October 17, 2017
Sandler, Travis & Rosenberg Trade Report

The World Customs Organization reports that its Harmonized System Committee took some 50 classification decisions related to products covered by the HS nomenclature in at least seven different areas at its 60th session held recently in Brussels. The HSC also adopted 18 sets of amendments to the HS explanatory notes and approved 21 new classification opinions. (Details of these actions have not yet been made available on the WCO website.)

According to the WCO, the HSC provisionally adopted six sets of amendments to the nomenclature as part of the work to prepare the seventh edition of the HS, which is expected to take effect in 2022. In addition, some goods classification decisions were submitted to the HS Review Sub-Committee for consideration of possible amendments to the nomenclature to facilitate the classification of various products, such as 3-D printers and motor vehicle windscreens. 

The HSC also held productive discussions on how to classify products newly released on the world market in sectors such as cutting-edge technology (e.g., equipment for manufacturing LCD modules), food (e.g., blanched green shell mussels), and tobacco.

The WCO notes that since the HSC’s first session in April 1988 it has examined 4,144 agenda items and taken 2,230 decisions. The number of contracting parties to the committee has grown from four in 1985 to 156 today, and the number of countries and economic and/or customs unions that use the HS now stands at 209.

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