Sunday, 6 January 2013


Moldova is a small country only 350 km long and 150 km wide. It is one of the Europe’s smallest countries and hardly explored. Although a slightly sleepy back water but it was the land where Chitty Bang Bang supposedly came down.

Surrounded by the Ukraine in the north, east and south and the river Prut forms a natural border in the west between Romania and Moldova. The river Dniest makes it way on the eastern side of Moldova through the hilly plains of the north down to the south the grassy steppes.




The people are a mix of 79 per cent Moldavian, 14 per cent Ukrainians and 13 per cent Russian. There is also a Turkish Christian group called Gaguaz and some other minority groups. Altogether the population is around 4.4million. The main religion is Orthodox Christian.



The country has a very fertile soil and warm summer with mild winters. All in all ideal for agriculture and it therefore received the nickname ‘garden of the USSR’. There are extensive vineyards and they produce excellent red and white wines. The city of Cricova is bottling five million litres of wine each year. The other crops which they produce are fruits, wheat, corn, tobacco, sunflowers and sugar beet. In the capital, Chisinau is the main industry of processing these products from the country side.


Moldova was occupied by the Romans the same as Romania. In the 16th century the Ottoman Turks conquered the area and ruled if for over 300 years. After that it became part of the Russian Empire. When the revolution broke out Moldova became a republic within the USSR.  For many years Romania tried to claim it and Moldova was occupied by Romania during the Second World War.

In August 1989 the country was the first to return to its original language and also changed the Soviet-enforced Cyrillic script to the Latin alphabet.  Moldova declared it independence in 1991 and became a member of the Commonwealth of Independent States. A year later it joined the United Nations, the Independent Monetary Fund and the Council for Security and Co-operation in Europe.

The question was raised of a possibility of reunification with Romania? However, a referendum was held in 1994 and the people voted for independence and with 80 per cent rejected the reunion. The people of Moldova demanded to continue with the economic links with the CIS.


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