Ongoing international negotiations on capacity enhancing fisheries subsidies may soon eliminate harmful subsidies. Although their negative ecosystem impacts are well known, their social dimensions are less understood. This paper investigates the distributional and equity dimensions of fisheries subsidies in two developing countries, Senegal and Vietnam, to understand how their provision or removal may affect different population groups. Using the limited data available, we paid specific attention to women and youth, who are especially vulnerable in these contexts. We recommend further study to understand the implications of reform on other vulnerable groups, such as indigenous peoples and ethnic minorities.