According to the announcement by Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Japan ("MOFA"), the EPA between Japan and Vietnam will enter into force on Oct. 01, 2009.
The Exchange of Diplomatic Notes concerning the Entry into Force of the Agreement between Japan and the Socialist Republic of Viet Nam for an Economic Partnership will take place in Hanoi on August 26 (Wed) between the Embassy of Japan in Viet Nam and the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Viet Nam.
With this Exchange of Notes, the Agreement will enter into force on October 1 (Thu).
This EPA is 11th for Japan, followed by the EPA with Singapore, Mexico, Malaysia, Chili, Thailand, Indonesia, Brunei, Asean, Philippines, and Switzerland.
With this EPA with Vietnam, it is estimated both countries will be able to eliminate the 92% of customs tariff of combined trade amount within 10 years.
Japan will reduce the tariff to zero for 95% of its import from Vietnam within 10 years.
Vietnam will reduce the tariff to zero for 88% of its import from Japan within 10 years. (93% will be eliminated in 16 years time.)
Trader should bear in mind Japan have had Japan-Asean EPA which is already entry into force, and can claim preferential tariff with Vietnam. Both Japan-Vietnam EPA and Japan-Asean EPA are independent EPA treaty and no legal superiority, traders can choose whichever EPA preferential tariff. Need to check which preferential tariff is beneficial based on HS code of the product.
(Source: http://www.mofa.go.jp/announce/announce/2009/8/1195112_1140.html )