Useful country information
Total area: 13,067 sq mi (33,843 sq km)
Population (2014 est.): 3,538,288 (growth rate: ?1.02%); birth rate: 12.21/1000; infant mortality rate: 12.93/1000; life expectancy: 70.12
Capital and largest city (2011 est.): Chisinau, 677,000
Monetary unit: Leu
National name: Republica Moldova
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% note: percentages represent lanugage usually spoken (2004 est.)
Ethnicity/race: Moldovan 75.8%, Ukrainian 8.4%, Russian 5.9%, Gagauz 4.4%, Romanian 2.2%, Bulgarian 1.9%, other 1%, unspecified 0.4% note: internal disputes with ethnic Slavs in the Transnistrian region (2004 est.)
Religions: Orthodox 93.3%, Baptist 1%, other Christian 1.2%, other 0.9%, atheist 0.4%, none 1%, unspecified 2.2% (2004 est.)
National Holiday: Independence Day, August 27
Literacy rate: 99% (2011 est.)
Although independent from the USSR since 1991, Russian forces have remained on Moldovan territory east of the Nistru (Dnister) River supporting the Slavic majority population, mostly Ukrainians and Russians, who have proclaimed a "Transnistria" republic. One of the poorest nations in Europe, Moldova became the first former Soviet state to elect a communist as its president in 2001.
In 2014 the Moldovan Government signed an Association Agreement with the EU, advancing the Coalition's policy priority of EU integration.
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