Moldova is a landlocked country in Eastern Europe, bordered by Romania to the west and Ukraine to the north, east, and south. The capital city is Chișinău. Most of the Moldovan territory was a part of the Principality of Moldavia from the 14th century until 1812, when it was ceded to the Russian Empire. The resulting union, the United Principalities of Moldavia and Wallachia, existed until 1859, when Wallachia was united with Moldavia, and then formed Romania. During the Soviet era (1944–1991), Moldova was a Soviet republic, one of the fifteen constituent republics of the Soviet Union.
The climate in Moldova is moderate and continental, with warm summers and cool winters. The average annual temperature is 10.8 °C (51.4 °F).
The country is a parliamentary republic with a president as head of state and a prime minister as head of government. It has a semi-presidential system, which is a rare system of government and is different from the presidential system in the United States. The Parliament of Moldova consists of 101 members, elected for a four-year term. The president is elected by Parliament for a four-year term.
The economy of Moldova is one of the poorest in Europe. The country has been described as a "captive nation" due to its economic dependence on Russia. Moldova's GDP per capita, PPP is US$3,910, the lowest in Europe. Unemployment is high, at 8.1% in 2016. Remittances from Moldovans working abroad account for 32% of GDP.
Moldova's main exports are agricultural products, textiles, and wine. The country is also a major transit country for illegal drugs, especially heroin. The main drug trafficking routes through Moldova go from Afghanistan to Europe.
Moldova is a member of the United Nations, the Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe, the World Trade Organization, and the Commonwealth of Independent States.