How to read HS/HTS codes?

When shipping a product across countries, it is a legal requirement to assign a six digit code to the product. The code is divided into three groups of two. The first two classify the product, the next two further define the product and the last two specify the product in detail. For example, the two digits of the HS code may say that the product is clothing; the next two might say it is shirt and the last two specify it is women’s red shirt.

Chapter: There are 21 sections divided into 96 chapters

Heading: This specifies the category within the particular chapter.

Sub-heading: The final two digits of the HS codes define sub categories of products and are more specific.

Example:

Chapter 84: Nuclear reactors, boilers, machinery and mechanical appliances, parts thereof

Heading 8471: Automatic data processing machines and units thereof, magnetic or optical readers, machines for transcribing data onto data media in coded form and machines for processing such data, not elsewhere specified or included

Sub-heading 8471.30: Automatic data processing machines; portable; weighing not more than 10kg; consisting of at least a central processing unit; a keyboard and a display

HTS code 8471.30.0100: Portable Digtl Automatic Data Processing Machines, weight Not More Than 10 Kg, consisting Of At Least A Central Processing Unit, keyboard & A Display

In the abovementioned HTS code, 01 is the US subheading of the HS code and 00 is the statistical suffix (nil in this case)