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Key Economic Data 
  2003 2002 2001 Ranking(2003)
Millions of US $ 1,964 1,621 1,500 141
GNI per capita
 US $ 590 460 400 157
Ranking is given out of 208 nations - (data from the World Bank)

Books on Moldova


Area ( 


ethnic groups 
Moldovans 64.5%
Ukrainians 13.8%
Russians 13.0%


Leu (plural: Lei)

Vladimir Voronin

Update No: 308 - (29/08/06)

Odd man out in Europe
Moldova is the poorest country in Europe, having been overtaken by Albania in the last decade, previously the bearer of this unenviable epithet.
In some ways it is an anomaly that it should be so poor, because it is in the centre of Europe and has rich fertile soil and a tradition of horticulture and agriculture going back millennia. It was, indeed, one of the richer republics of the USSR, a fact which helps to account for why it is also the only country in Europe that still has a communist party in power, which, moreover, was re-elected last year.
The president in Moldova is elected by parliament, so is always the head of the governing party. This has been for five years now the head of the Communist Party of Moldova, Vladimir Voronin, a figure who, in yet another paradox, is much more popular in the West than in Moscow.
The Kremlin has tried in its usual heavy-handed way to undermine the president and government by imposing a ban, allegedly on health grounds, on Moldova's wine and several other exports to Russia, traditionally, its main market. This is crippling the already sorely tried economy.

Russia's ban on Moldovan products affects republic's economy 
Russia's ban on wine, crop and livestock imports from Moldova affected the development of the Moldovan economy, Vasiliy Tarlev, the republic's Prime Minister, told a government meeting, while presenting a report on the socio-economic development of the country in the first half of 2006.
He noted that the rise of gas prices and export barriers explained the growth of the inflation rate to 7.4 per cent in January-June 2006, up by 2.7 per cent from the same period of 2005. Moldova's exports dropped by 10.6 per cent; while imports rose by 14.4 per cent in the relevant period. Wine production fell by 42.4 per cent. The growth of prices of energy resources not only damaged the competitiveness of Moldovan products, it was also a serious challenge to the country's energy sector.
Nevertheless, Moldova managed to preserve macroeconomic stability in the first half of 2006, the premier noted. The country's GDP rose by 6.2 per cent. 

President: The country is preparing for a spurt following "Latvia's model"
Meanwhile, the Moldovan president decided to put a positive interpretation on recent developments in two important speeches he made in July.
Voronin believes that the current troubled state of the Moldovan economy is just a challenge which should be seen as a new requirement for Moldova's independence, he announced at a news conference in Chisinau on July 11th, a REGNUM correspondent reports. 
"The situation has become a serious incentive for the Republic of Moldova," Voronin noted. "An incentive to actively reorganize its economic sphere, modernize and diversify its export-oriented potential, apply models of development to our economy that have been long used in Latvia."
"We are thoroughly preparing for the spurt," the Moldovan president announced. "Our European and American partners will view this approach with understanding," Voronin averred. 
The Moldovan president says, the republic should gain advantages from both its neighbourhood to the EU and the prospect of obtaining an asymmetrical trade regime with Europe, as well as from a free trade regime with CIS countries. "We cannot really be serious in hoping that a modern economy can be built alone on wine and sweet-cherries," Voronin concluded. 

Country "needs industrial revolution"
The Moldovan president on July 29th addressed the same message to the Moldovan parliament, maintaining that his country does not have chances for further development without radical reforms.
Mr. Voronin stated that the Republic of Moldova "needs an industrial revolution" and he called on MPs not to be scared by the radicalism of his proposals. "One should not be scared by economic freedoms. We should carefully adopt economic freedoms reasoning from other countries' experience. The more freedoms, the more the competitiveness of Moldovan goods will rise," Mr. Voronin said. 
"Entering into the 15th year of our independence, we should become a country which opens a new page in the history of its democracy, its economy, and its social development," the Moldovan president stressed. 
"We have only one way to prosperity - quick modernization - in our present situation," Mr. Voronin said. "I am sure that only in such way will we gain real independence and the territorial and civil unity of our motherland," the president stressed. 

Moldova Abolishes Death Penalty
In a move to align the country with European legal practice, so different from that of the US, Moldova abolished the death penalty completely, the radio station Echo of Moscow reports. 
The law was adopted recently by the country's parliament and on August 2nd it was signed by President Voronin. Thus Moldova joins the 13th protocol of the European Convention for the Protection of Human Rights and is obliged to abstain from implementing the death penalty in every case. 
Up to now the law in Moldova allowed the passing and execution of death sentences in special cases in wartime.




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