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Abstract

When Vietnam joined the World Trade Organization (WTO) in 2007 it was granted an accession period up to 2014. During this period tariffs would have to fall according to the accession agreement. This paper evaluates this 2007–2014 trade liberalization by building an applied general equilibrium model and calibrating it to the Vietnamese data. The model pays careful attention to the fact that Vietnam has many state-owned enterprises. The model simulations show that the WTO tariff reductions will reduce overall welfare. Moreover, the biggest loss will take place among the poor rural households in Vietnam. This paper proposes other tariff reforms that will both raise overall welfare and reduce income inequality.