A country in the heart of Europe, sandwiched between Romania and Ukraine, the Republic of Moldova has been blessed from the geographic point of view, serving as a true connecting bridge between Western and Eastern markets. The country enjoys an excellent connectivity with all European states and with most of ex-Soviet republics, at a 3-hour click by air.
The Republic of Moldova benefits from a liberalized visa regime with the European Union and CIS countries. At the same time, citizens from the EU, CEFTA, US, United Kingdom, Switzerland, Japan, Canada, Turkey, Israel, Australia, and other more than 50 states traveling to Moldova are not required to apply for a visa (find more details about the visa regime here). They may stay in Moldova for 90 days within six months after the first entry.
Foreign nationals who need visas may apply at one of the diplomatic missions accredited in the host country or via the governmental portal evisa.gov.md, which was designed for the issue of short-term visas (C type).
The Republic of Moldova has a network of six airports of which four are international hubs. The International Airport and and Bălți International Airport are the largest.
Chișinău International Airport (airport.md, code KIV) is the largest airfare transportation facility in Moldova. Located around 10 kilometers south of the capital, the Chișinău International Airport handles flights to most European capitals as well as some intercontinental airways. Passenger travel is provided by the local carriers Air Moldova, HiSky, and FlyOne, and foreign carriers such as TAROM, Aeroflot, Turkish Airlines, Austrian, Lufthansa, AirItaly, S7 Airlines, Arkia, UIA, WizzAir, LOT. Overall 19 air carriers ensure the connection with 40 destinations including direct flights to Vienna, Paris, Frankfurt, London, Geneva, Rome, Verona, Venice, Moscow, Dubai, Bucharest, Milan, Kiev, Warsaw, Istanbul.
Bălți International Airport (code BZY) is located in the northern part of the country and is the second largest air transportation hub in Moldova. It operates mainly regional flights.
The Dniester River and the Proute River are suitable for navigation but neither plays any significant roles in the freight trade or travel. Navigation on these rivers occurs for tourism considerations. However, the Republic of Moldova has an international port in Giurgiulești on the Danube River side, which includes a cereal terminal and an oil terminal, with access to the Black Sea (some 133 km). The Giurgiulești International Port is a free economic zone that offers tax incentives for investors.
Railway transportation is a secure and cheap option compared to other means of transportation. The national railway operator is Calea Ferată din Moldova (Moldovan Railways) and provides for both freight movement and passenger travel. Moldova is connected to Romania’s and Ukraine’s rail systems. The border into Ukraine is crossed at the checkpoints Ocnița, north, and Basarabeasca, south-east. For Romania there are checkpoints in Ungheni, west, and Giurgiulești, south-west.
The principal junctions of Moldova’s railways are in Chișinău, Bender, Ocnița, Bălți, and Basarabeasca. Moldova has rail linkages with Odessa and Ivano-Frankivsk in Ukraine, Iași and Galați in Romania. From there, trains run for international destinations everywhere - Moscow and St.Petersburg (Russia), Minsk (Belarus), Kiev, Chernovtsy, Nikolaev (Ukraine), Bucharest, Brașov, Cluj-Napoca (Romania), Istanbul (Turkey), Sofia (Bulgaria), Berlin (Germany), Prague (Czech Republic). The total length of Moldovan rail lines is more than 1,230 kilometers.
TRANSPORTATION BY ROAD
No private roads exist in the Republic of Moldova - all are public - and they are either national or local. The public road network brings together more than 9,400 kilometers, of which national roads make up around 3,300 kilometers.
Six roads represent thoroughfares that connect with the international transportation routes and are part of the 7th and 9th Pan-European Transport Corridors, which eases the access to EU and CIS markets and to northern and southern countries, respectively. The country is also crossed by the TRACECA Corridor and is linked with the TEN-T Trans-European Corridor.
The transportation by road has captured the largest share of cargo shipping in Moldova - more than 63% of all.
DIGITAL CONNETIVITY AND COMMUNICATIONS
The telecommunications and internet market (ICT) is one of the most dynamic and liberalized sectors in the Republic of Moldova, with the biggest added value. Growth has been strongest in such services as mobile telephony, broadband mobile internet, and broadband fixed-lines internet. Mobile telephony and mobile internet are based on the 4G technology while operators are experimenting already with 5G.
The biggest players in the ICT market are Moldtelecom - a public enterprise, Orange Moldova - which is controlled the French giant Orange as its majority shareholder, Moldcell - founded by an international consortium, and StarNet - a local private company. Overall there are more than 50 internet and phone services providers in Moldova.
The mobile signal covers on average 99% of territory and internet is is available on more than 80% of Moldovan land. The average download speed of internet in Moldova overpasses the indicators in other countries of the region (48 Mbps) while the cost of services is decreasing every year.
The ICT sector thrives thanks to the support from the Moldovan Government via various tax incentives.