Rolling steppe, gradual slope south to Black Sea
Moderate winters, warm summers
Population: 3,583,288 (July 2014 est.)
Languages: Moldovan 58.8% (official; virtually the same as the Romanian language), Romanian 16.4%, Russian 16%, Ukrainian 3.8%, Gagauz 3.1% (a Turkish language), Bulgarian 1.1%, other 0.3%, unspecified 0.4%
Orthodox 93.3%, Baptist 1%, other Christian 1.2%, other 0.9%, atheist 0.4%, none 1%, unspecified 2.2% (2004 est.)
Despite recent progress, Moldova remains one of the poorest countries in Europe. With a moderate climate and good farmland, Moldova's economy relies heavily on its agriculture sector, featuring fruits, vegetables, wine, and tobacco. Moldova also depends on annual remittances of about $1.6 billion from the roughly one million Moldovans working in Europe, Russia, and other former Soviet Bloc countries. With few natural energy resources, Moldova imports almost all of its energy supplies.
The rural culture of Moldova has always placed a high value on private housing. In the 1990s, private builders were responsible for 95 percent of construction in rural areas. As of 1994, about 90 percent of the rural and 36 percent of the urban apartments were privately owned. Most of the urban housing units were built in the years immediately following World War II (1939–45), because the cities had been heavily bombed during the war.
US Military Presence/Support