The Mekong River flows through China, Cambodia, and Laos, and its delta lies in southern Vietnam. Agriculture is the primary activity in Laos and Vietnam. Subsistence farming is commonly practiced in Laos while contract farming is practiced in Vietnam. Both countries have entered a new era of seeking foreign markets and investment, but Vietnam is further along the path to becoming a newly industrializing economy. Water plays a key role in the economic development of each country. Learn more about these geographic themes from The Mainland with expanded descriptions of the two case studies presented in the program.