Most Laotian Chinese are descendants of older generations who moved down from the Southern China provinces from the 19th century and present.Most have ancestry from the provinces of:Yunnan, Guangdong, Guangxi, Sichuan and, Guizhou. Laotian Chinese are mostly Teochew and Cantonese, but some also speak Southwestern Mandarin from the Chinese provinces of Yunnan and Sichuan. Today in Laos, many ethnic Chinese migrants have decided to reside in Laos, making the population rise by a couple of thousands, Many ethnic Chinese were also involved in constructing the 2009 Southeast Asian Games venues held in Vientiane. During the 1970s and 1980s, after the Communist Pathet Lao came into power, some Laotian Chinese fled to Thailand and other countries. The U.S. also has a significant Laotian Chinese population. Many still practice certain Chinese traditions and customs as their ancestors did. Most of the ethnic Chinese in Laos fled the country during the Communist takeover in 1975.
According to Amy Chua, "In Laos, which has almost no indigenous commercial culture, the 1 to 2 percent Chinese minority more or less comprise 100% of the country's entire business community, profiting eagerly from every grudging inch of globalization-induced market opening." Most Laotian Chinese entrepreneurs specialize in retail and repair shops, restaurants, and hotels.