19 CFR 10.305 - Value content requirement.
(a)Direct cost of processing or assembling -
(1)Definition. For purposes of applying a specific rule of origin under the Agreement which requires a value content determination, the terms “direct cost of processing” and “direct cost of assembling” mean the costs directly incurred in, or that can be reasonably allocated to, the production of goods, including:
(i) The cost of all labor, including benefits and on-the-job training, labor provided in connection with supervision, quality control, shipping, receiving, storage, packaging, management at the location of the process or assembly, and other like labor, whether provided by employees or independent contractors;
(ii) The cost of inspecting and testing the goods;
(iii) The cost of energy, fuel, dies, molds, tooling, and the depreciation and maintenance of machinery and equipment, without regard to whether they originate within the territory of the United States or Canada;
(iv) Development, design, and engineering costs;
(vi) Royalty, licensing, or other like payments for the right to the goods.
(2)Exclusions from direct costs of processing or assembling. Excluded from the direct costs of processing or assembling are:
(i) Costs relating to the general expense of doing business, such as the cost of providing executive, financial, sales, advertising, marketing, accounting and legal services, and insurance;
(ii) Brokerage charges relating to the importation and exportation of goods;
(iii) Costs for telephone, mail, and other means of communication;
(iv) Packing costs for exporting the goods;
(v) Royalty payments related to a licensing agreement to distribute or sell the goods;
(vi) Rent, mortgage interest, depreciation on buildings, property insurance premiums, maintenance, taxes, and the cost of utilities for real property used by personnel charged with administrative functions; and
(vii) Profit on the goods.
(i)Indirect materials. Under the definition of “materials” set forth in § 10.303(b), certain types of materials are treated as direct costs of processing or assembling under paragraph (a) of this section. This applies principally to materials used or consumed indirectly in the production of exported goods, where no portion of those materials is physically incorporated in the exported goods. In addition to the items specified in paragraph (a)(1)(iii) of this section, such materials include items such as gloves and safety glasses worn by production workers, tape used in painting processes, and tools, materials and spare parts used in the repair and maintenance of machinery and equipment used in the production of the exported goods. Such materials are to be distinguished from waste and spoilage specified in paragraph (b)(1)(ii)(C) of this section, which relate to materials that are physically incorporated in the exported goods.
(ii)Directly incurred. In order for costs incurred by a production facility to be treated as direct costs of processing or assembling, those costs must be directly incurred in the production of the exported goods and not merely associated with the production facility as peripheral costs necessary to operate the facility. In addition to the exclusions set forth in paragraph (a)(2) of this section, such peripheral costs include labor costs for nurses tending to employees, for accounting personnel involved in physical inventory taking, for personnel responsible for purchasing or requisitioning materials to be used or consumed in the production process, and for second level supervisors and above who are not directly involved in the production process.
(iii)Labor costs. Under paragraph (a)(1)(i) of this section, labor costs includable as direct costs of processing or assembling are limited to labor provided by the producer's employees or by independent contractors. Thus, for example, where processing operations are performed on components in the United States and those components are sold to a manufacturer in Canada where they are incorporated in goods exported to the United States, the cost of those processing operations in the United States cannot be separately counted as a direct cost of processing attributable to the finished goods exported to the United States.
(iv)Interest expense. Bona fide interest payments on debt of any form, secured or unsecured, undertaken on arm's length terms in the ordinary course of business to finance the acquisition of fixed assets such as real property, a plant, and/or equipment used in the production of goods in the territory of Canada or the U.S. are includable in the direct cost of processing or direct cost of assembling. Interest will be treated as a direct cost of processing or assembling, but only that portion of the interest which is related to a fixed asset directly used in the production of the goods exported; thus, where an entire production facility is covered by a mortgage and incorporates both production and administrative or other general expense space, an appropriate allocation must be made in order to ensure that only that portion of the interest allocated to the production area is counted toward the value-content requirement. Interest expenses attributable to general and administrative costs or expenses, including interest on funds borrowed to meet the payroll of personnel directly involved in the production of goods, are not considered direct costs of processing or assembly.
(b)Value of originating materials -
(i) The price paid by the producer of exported goods for materials originating in either the United States or Canada, or both, or for materials imported from a third country used or consumed in the production of such originating materials; and
(ii) When not included in that price, the following costs related thereto:
(C) The cost of waste or spoilage resulting from the use or consumption of such materials, less the value of renewable scrap or by-product; and
(D) The value of goods and services relating to such materials determined in accordance with subparagraph 1(b) of Article 8 of the Agreement on Implementation of Article VII of the General Agreement on Tariffs and Trade.
(2)Directly attributable. Whenever a value-content determination is required by the rules of the Agreement and whenever originating materials and materials obtained or produced in a third country are used or consumed together in the production of goods in the United States or Canada, the value of originating materials may be treated as such only to the extent that the value is directly attributable to the goods under consideration.
(i)Price paid. As provided in paragraph (b)(1) of this section, the “price paid” for materials by the producer of exported goods forms the basis for determining the value of such materials when incorporated in the exported goods. The actual price paid for such materials will determine the value of those materials for purposes of the value-content requirement, even though a relationship between the producer and the seller of the materials may have influenced the price, except where the price did not include items specified in paragraph (b)(1)(ii) of this section that relate to the materials. The following examples will illustrate these principles. Notwithstanding these examples, the totality of the facts must be examined in each case to determine whether § 10.304(b) is applicable.
(ii)Originating materials for which no price paid. In cases involving a vertically integrated producer (that is, an entity which produces goods for export from materials which that producer has also made) a “price paid” for such originating materials normally does not exist. Even in the absence of a “price paid”, such a vertically integrated producer may still claim the materials as originating materials for purposes of qualifying the finished goods exported to the United States as goods originating in Canada. However, under paragraph (b)(1)(i) of this section the value of those materials for purposes of applying the value-content requirement is limited to the price paid for those materials imported from the third country plus any costs added thereto under paragraph (b)(1)(ii) of this section. The following examples will illustrate these principles.
(c)Value of goods when exported. The term “value of the goods when exported to the United States” means the aggregate of:
(1) The price paid by the producer for all materials, whether or not the materials originate in the United States, or Canada, or both, and, when not included in the price paid for the materials, the following costs related thereto:
(iii) The cost of waste or spoilage resulting from the use or consumption of such materials, less the value of renewable scrap or by-product; and
(iv) The value of goods and services relating to all materials determined in accordance with subparagraph 1(b) of Article 8 of the Agreement on Implementation of Article VII of the General Agreement on Tariffs Trade; and
(2) The direct cost of processing or the direct cost of assembling the goods.