Where is Moldova located?

What countries border Moldova?

Moldova Weather

What is the current weather in Moldova?

Moldova Facts and Culture

What is Moldova famous for?

  • Cultural Attributes: Moldova's fertile black soil and mild climate make the country ideal for agriculture. Extensive irrigation systems supplement the rainfall. Crop... More
  • Family: Most couples have only one or two children. Many women work full-time as well as do the housework. More
  • Personal Apperance: Urban people wear either Western or European style of clothes. Rural men wear shirts and pants made of durable cloth... More
  • Recreation: Soccer is the most popular sport. Visiting family and friends and the numerous parks are favorite recreational activities. Vacations are... More
  • Food and Recipes: Lunch is the main meal, it consists of a starter or appetizer, soup and a hot dish. Breakfast may consist... More

Moldova Facts

What is the capital of Moldova?

Capital Chisinau in Romanian (Kishinev in Russian)

pronounced KEE-shee-now (KIH-shi-nyov)
Government Type parliamentary republic
Currency Moldovan Leu (MDL)
Total Area 13,070 Square Miles
33,851 Square Kilometers
Location Eastern Europe, northeast of Romania
Language Moldovan (official, virtually the same as the Romanian language), Russian, Gagauz (a Turkish dialect)
GDP - real growth rate -1%
GDP - per capita (PPP) $5,000.00 (USD)

Moldova Demographics

What is the population of Moldova?

Ethnic Groups Moldovan/Romanian 64.5%, Ukrainian 13.8%, Russian 13%, Jewish 1.5%, Bulgarian 2%, Gagauz and other 5.2%
Nationality Noun Moldovan(s)
Population 3,364,496
Population Growth Rate -1.02%
Population in Major Urban Areas CHISINAU (capital) 677,000
Urban Population 47.700000

Moldova Government

What type of government does Moldova have?

Executive Branch chief of state: President Maia SANDU (since 24 December 2020)

head of government: Prime Minister Dorin RECEAN (since 16 February 2023)

cabinet: Cabinet proposed by the prime minister-designate, nominated by the president, approved through a vote of confidence in Parliament

elections/appointments: president directly elected for a 4-year term (eligible for a second term); election last held on 15 November 2020 (next to be held in fall 2024); prime minister designated by the president upon consultation with Parliament; within 15 days from designation, the prime minister-designate must request a vote of confidence for his/her proposed work program from the Parliament

election results:

2020: Maia SANDU elected president in second round; percent of vote in second round - Maia SANDU (PAS) 57.7%, Igor DODON (PSRM) 42.3%

2016: Igor DODON elected president in second round; percent of vote - Igor DODON (PSRM) 52.1%, Maia SANDU (PAS) 47.9%
Suffrage 18 years of age; universal
Citizenship citizenship by birth: no

citizenship by descent only: at least one parent must be a citizen of Moldova

dual citizenship recognized: no

residency requirement for naturalization: 10 years
National Holiday Independence Day, 27 August (1991)
Constitution history: previous 1978; latest adopted 29 July 1994, effective 27 August 1994

amendments: proposed by voter petition (at least 200,000 eligible voters), by at least one third of Parliament members, or by the government; passage requires two-thirds majority vote of Parliament within one year of initial proposal; revisions to constitutional articles on sovereignty, independence, and neutrality require majority vote by referendum; articles on fundamental rights and freedoms cannot be amended; amended many times, last in 2018
Independence 27 August 1991 (from the Soviet Union)

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Moldova Geography

What environmental issues does Moldova have?

Overview Moldova encompasses what was until August 1991 the Moldavian Soviet Socialist Republic, and is located between Romania and Ukraine. Except for a small strip of land on the Danube River, the country is land‑locked. Moldova is a relatively small country, roughly 300 km long and 100 km across. The area east of the Dniester (Nistru) river, along with the city of Bender west of the Dniester, is the breakaway and officially unrecognized Transnistrian Moldovan Republic, or Transnistria. Transnistria is not recognized by Moldova, the U.S., or any other country. Tiraspol is the "capital" of Transnistria. Moldova’s total population is 4.3 million, of whom 800,000 live in Chisinau. The majority of the population lives in the countryside in villages organized around former state farms.

The countryside is comprised mainly of gently rolling agricultural lands with a gradual slope south toward the Black Sea. Seventy percent of the soil is composed of the famous, fertile "Black Earth" (chernozim) in this region. Because of the clearing of land for agricultural cultivation—especially in the Soviet era for grape production—there are few forests or woodlands. There has been soil erosion due to farming methods

Climate Moldova's climate is mild in the winter and warm in the summery. Winter temperatures are typically in the 20s (F) but occasionally fall below zero. Highs in the summer are typically in the 80s but can go as high as 100. There are four distinct seasons, with foliage on trees between April and October. The climate is semi‑arid. Because of the clearing of land for agricultural cultivation--especially in the Soviet era for grape production--there are few forests or woodlands. There has been soil erosion due to farming methods. The effect in the cities is that occasionally dust can blow up from the streets in gusts. Humidity in the summer can be high.
Border Countries Romania 450 km, Ukraine 939 km
Environment - Current Issues heavy use of agricultural chemicals, including banned pesticides such as DDT, has contaminated soil and groundwater; extensive soil erosion from poor farming methods
Environment - International Agreements party to: Air Pollution, Air Pollution-Persistent Organic Pollutants, Biodiversity, Climate Change, Climate Change-Kyoto Protocol, Desertification, Endangered Species, Hazardous Wastes, Ozone Layer Protection, Ship Pollution, Wetlands

signed, but not ratified: none of the selected agreements
Terrain rolling steppe, gradual slope south to Black Sea

Moldova Economy

How big is the Moldova economy?

Economic Overview Despite recent progress, Moldova remains one of the poorest countries in Europe. With a moderate climate and productive farmland, Moldova's economy relies heavily on its agriculture sector, featuring fruits, vegetables, wine, wheat, and tobacco. Moldova also depends on annual remittances of about $1.2 billion - almost 15% of GDP - from the roughly one million Moldovans working in Europe, Israel, Russia, and elsewhere.

With few natural energy resources, Moldova imports almost all of its energy supplies from Russia and Ukraine. Moldova's dependence on Russian energy is underscored by a more than $6 billion debt to Russian natural gas supplier Gazprom, largely the result of unreimbursed natural gas consumption in the breakaway region of Transnistria. Moldova and Romania inaugurated the Ungheni-Iasi natural gas interconnector project in August 2014. The 43-kilometer pipeline between Moldova and Romania, allows for both the import and export of natural gas. Several technical and regulatory delays kept gas from flowing into Moldova until March 2015. Romanian gas exports to Moldova are largely symbolic. In 2018, Moldova awarded a tender to Romanian Transgaz to construct a pipeline connecting Ungheni to Chisinau, bringing the gas to Moldovan population centers. Moldova also seeks to connect with the European power grid by 2022.

The government's stated goal of EU integration has resulted in some market-oriented progress. Moldova experienced better than expected economic growth in 2017, largely driven by increased consumption, increased revenue from agricultural exports, and improved tax collection. During fall 2014, Moldova signed an Association Agreement and a Deep and Comprehensive Free Trade Agreement with the EU (AA/DCFTA), connecting Moldovan products to the world’s largest market. The EU AA/DCFTA has contributed to significant growth in Moldova’s exports to the EU. In 2017, the EU purchased over 65% of Moldova’s exports, a major change from 20 years previously when the Commonwealth of Independent States (CIS) received over 69% of Moldova’s exports. A $1 billion asset-stripping heist of Moldovan banks in late 2014 delivered a significant shock to the economy in 2015; the subsequent bank bailout increased inflationary pressures and contributed to the depreciation of the leu and a minor recession. Moldova’s growth has also been hampered by endemic corruption, which limits business growth and deters foreign investment, and Russian restrictions on imports of Moldova’s agricultural products. The government’s push to restore stability and implement meaningful reform led to the approval in 2016 of a $179 million three-year IMF program focused on improving the banking and fiscal environments, along with additional assistance programs from the EU, World Bank, and Romania. Moldova received two IMF tranches in 2017, totaling over $42.5 million.

Over the longer term, Moldova's economy remains vulnerable to corruption, political uncertainty, weak administrative capacity, vested bureaucratic interests, energy import dependence, Russian political and economic pressure, heavy dependence on agricultural exports, and unresolved separatism in Moldova's Transnistria region.
Industries food processing, agricultural machinery, foundry equipment, refrigerators and freezers, washing machines, hosiery, sugar, vegetable oil, shoes, textiles
Currency Name and Code Moldovan Leu (MDL)
Export Partners Russia 34.6%, Italy 11.5%, Germany 9.1%, Ukraine 6.9%, Romania 6.2%, US 5.2%, Belarus 4.5%, Spain 4.1%
Import Partners Ukraine 22.6%, Russia 20.2%, Germany 10.7%, Romania 8.3%, Italy 7%

Moldova News and Current Events

What current events are happening in Moldova?
Source: Google News

Moldova Travel Information

What makes Moldova a unique country to travel to?

Country Description

The Republic of Moldova is a parliamentary democracy. Moldova is a member of NATO's Partnership for Peace program as well as a member of the Council of Europe. The capital, Chisinau, offers adequate hotels and restaurants, but tourist facilities in other parts of the country are not always highly developed and some of the goods and services taken for granted in other countries are not yet available.


Most travelers to Moldova enjoy a safe and pleasant stay. Occasionally, travelers become victims of crime, usually petty theft, but sometimes more serious fraud. Foreign visitors rarely suffer physical violence or sexual assault. Some U.S. citizens have reported theft of money, passports, and small valuables from hotel rooms and local apartments, along with home and office burglaries. Be careful and protect your valuables in Chisinau, just as you would in any major U.S. city.

Be cautious when using ATMs in Moldova. Some U.S. citizens have reported unauthorized access to their accounts after using ATMs (although banks sometimes post their fees later as separate transactions). They have also reported PIN theft from ATMs in Moldova, either by "skimming" devices, which record the card information, or by hidden cameras or "shoulder surfing."

Train and bus services are below Western European standards and some U.S. citizens have been robbed while traveling on international trains to and from Moldova. Be on your guard against pickpockets on public transit. U.S. citizens who use the Moldovan postal service have reported that international letters and package mail are sometimes opened or pilfered.

Don't buy counterfeit and pirated goods, even if they are widely available. Not only are the bootlegs illegal to bring back into the United States, but if you purchase them you may also be breaking local law.

Internet fraud warning: There are various Internet scams in Moldova that target foreigners. Since 2008, "phishing" schemes have hacked the bank accounts of U.S. businesses and transferred the money to Moldova. Internet auction fraud, in which buyers fail to pay for purchases or send counterfeit checks as payment, is not uncommon.

Be aware of dating scams, in which someone you met over the Internet asks for money. They may say they need money to help their family, buy plane tickets, pay medical bills, provide "economic solvency funds," etc. A number of U.S. citizens have been defrauded. Fraud committed in Moldova is subject to Moldovan law and could prove difficult to prosecute. The U.S. Embassy can do little to assist U.S. citizens defrauded via the Internet. Please see our information on International Financial Scams.

If arrested: If you are arrested in Moldova, authorities of Moldova are required to notify the U.S. Embassy of your arrest. However, Moldovan police, particularly in Transnistria, do not always report the arrest or detention of U.S. citizens. If you are concerned the Department of State may not be aware of your situation, you should request the police or prison officials to notify the U.S. Embassy of your arrest.

Criminal Penalties

While you are traveling in Moldova, you are subject to its laws even if you are a U.S. citizen. Moldovan laws and legal systems can be vastly different than our own. In some places you may be taken in for questioning if you don't have your passport with you. In some places, it is illegal to take pictures of certain buildings. In some places driving under the influence could land you immediately in jail. These criminal penalties will vary from country to country. There are also some activities that might be legal in Moldova, but still illegal in the United States, and you can be prosecuted under U.S. law if you buy pirated goods. Engaging in sexual conduct with children or possessing or disseminating child pornography in a foreign country is a crime prosecutable in the United States.If you break local laws in Moldova, your U.S. passport will not help you avoid arrest or prosecution.

Medical Facilities and Health Information

Medical care is substandard throughout Moldova, including in Chisinau. If you are sick or injured, try to go to Western Europe for treatment. In an emergency, try to contact the local ambulance service. Hospital accommodations are inadequate, technology is not advanced, and there may be shortages of routine medications and supplies. Elderly travelers and those with existing health problems may be at particular risk. The U.S. Embassy maintains a list of medical facilities and English-speaking doctors, but cannot endorse any doctors.

If you take prescription or over-the-counter medications, you should bring an extra supply with you. Pharmacies are not always stocked to Western standards, products are not always labeled in English, and poor quality and/or counterfeit medications have been reported.

Safety and Security

Although there have been no terrorist incidents and we are currently unaware of terrorist threats against U.S. citizens in Moldova, stay aware of your surroundings at all times. Because police have the legal right to ask for identification on the street, carry your passport or a photocopy with you at all times.

A separatist regime controls the Transnistria region, east of the Dniester River. Be careful when visiting or crossing Transnistria, since the U.S. Embassy may not be able to help if you encounter difficulties. There are many checkpoints along roads leading into and out of Transnistria. Taking photographs of checkpoints, military facilities, and security forces is prohibited.

Members of racial minority groups visiting Moldova have sometimes reported that they were stared at, verbally abused, denied entrance into some clubs and restaurants, or harassed by police.

While Moldovan police can be helpful and might assist travelers in need, U.S. citizens have sometimes been harassed, mistreated, or subjected to extortion by Moldovan police. If a policeman stops you, you have a right to see his identity card ("legiti-MAT-seeya" in Romanian). Traffic police should also display a metal badge on the outside of their uniforms. If the policeman harasses you or asks for a bribe, try to remember the official's name, title, badge number, and description, and contact the U.S. Embassy. If you refuse to pay a bribe, you might be delayed, but there have been few reports of any problems beyond inconvenience.

Traffic Safety and Road Conditions

While in Moldova, you may encounter very different road conditions from those in the United States.

Moldova's highway infrastructure consists mainly of two-lane roads that often lack signage, are unevenly maintained, and seldom have lighting. Be careful of tractors, bicyclists, horse-drawn carts, pedestrians, and livestock on the road. Streets in Moldova are not well maintained. Try to limit driving outside cities to daylight hours. Many Moldovan drivers would be considered aggressive or erratic by U.S. standards. Many accidents involve drunk drivers. In 2009, Moldova adopted a law that established a maximum legal blood alcohol content of 0.03%, well under the levels allowed in most states in the United States. If you drive with a blood alcohol level above 0.08%, you will be charged in criminal court. However, traffic police generally do not have testing equipment at roadside, so if they can smell alcohol on your breath, you're likely to becharged with a crime. If this happens, you have the right to request a blood test to confirm your actual blood alcohol level. To be safe, don't drink alcohol before driving. The quality and safety of public transportation vary widely. Trains, trolleybuses, and buses are often old and frequently break down. Taxis are available in most urban areas, and vary from old Soviet-era vehicles to new Western European or U.S. vehicles. Emergency services are generally responsive, although you may not find an English-speaking operator. You can call police at 902 and an ambulance at 903.

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