The Republic of Moldova (Republica Moldova) is a landlocked country in Eastern Europe, located between Romania to the west and Ukraine to the north, east and south.
Moldova is landlocked, but is still very close to the Black Sea.
Capitol: Chisinau, located on Byk River in the central part of the country.
The country's other important cities are Tiraspol, Tighina (also known as Bender) and Balti.
Population: 4,320,490 (July 2007 est.).
Despite being the most densely populated (132 person per sq km) of the former Soviet Republics it has very few large cities.
Climate: Moldova enjoys a favorable climate and good farmland but has no major mineral deposits. As a result, the economy depends heavily on agriculture, featuring fruits, vegetables, Moldovan wine, and tobacco.
(Brief) History: Moldovans are descended from the Dacians who were conquered by the Romans in 100 AD. This was followed by a millennium of instability and change, as the region was invaded by neighboring countries and made a focal point for the diaspora of Magyars, Slavs and Bulgarians spreading across Eastern Europe. It was also a port of call for Byzantine, Italian and Greek merchants.
By the beginning of the Middle Ages, when the flow of people had died down to a trickle and an organized state had begun to emerge, Moldavia (as part of Romania) was already a potpourri of different races and cultures. The Principality of Moldavia, it was annexed by the Russian Empire in 1812. At the dissolution of the latter, it united with other Romanian lands in Romania in 1918.
After being occupied by the Soviet Union in 1940, and changing hands in 1941 and 1944 during World War II, it was known as the Moldavian SSR from then until 1991. Moldova declared its independence from the Soviet Union on August of 1991.
Although Moldova has been independent from the USSR since 1991, Russian forces have remained on Moldovan territory east of the Dniester River despite signing international obligations to withdraw.....
Government: Moldova is a parliamentary democracy. It has a President as its head of state and a Prime Minister as its head of government.
The country is a member state of the United Nations, WTO, OSCE, GUAM, CIS, BSEC and other international organizations. Moldova has officially been a neutral country since its independence, and an early member of the NATO Partnership for Peace.
Ethnic groups: Moldovan/Romanian 78.2%, Ukrainian 8.4%, Russian 5.8%, Gagauz 4.4%, Bulgarian 1.9%, other 1.3% (2004 census)
Languages: Moldovan (official), Russian, Gagauz (a Turkish dialect)
Moldovan cuisine has had a great influence on the traditional food of the other nationalities that live on this territory. The ingredients used in the traditional meals are: a variety of vegetables like tomatoes, green peppers, aubergines, white cabbage, beans, onions, garlic, etc. The vegetables are used for salads and sauces; they are baked, pickled, salted, and canned thus becoming a real food art.
The maize and maize flour give a specific color to the traditional meals, like soups, biscuits, flakes, alcohol free drinks, etc. The most common is “mamaliga” – a maize porridge or polenta with a fine and delicious taste. "Mamaliga" is served together with diced meat, cheese, fried meat, cream, etc.
Moldova is best known for vineyards and wine-making. The famous Moldovan wines are well known and appreciated at home and far beyond the country borders. The wines can be dry, sweet and strong, they have a varied bouquet of flavours and colours. Strong drinks such as plum brandy, are produced using traditional methods.
Per capita wine consumption is among the highest in the world.
All of the energy supplies for Moldova must be imported (gas, coal, etc), this leaves Moldova at a great economic disadvantage.
Moldova has a break away sect known as Transnistria.