Official name

ПМР (PMR). This abbrevation stands for Приднестровская Молдавская Республика (Pridnjestrovskaya Moldavskaya Respublika - Predniestrian-Moldovan Republic). But this name is rarely used outside the PMR - most people refer to it as Transdniestr. Officials of the PMR don't like that name: 'Trans' originally means 'behind'. They prefer 'in front of', which means 'pri-' in Russian. Besides 'Transdniestr', many spellings are common: Transdnjestria, Transnestria, Transdnistria and so on. The official English name, prefered by local authorities, is Dniester Moldavian Republic (DMR). The coat of arms also contains the abbrevation PMH - this might be the Moldovan (ie Romanian) abbrevation, but I'm not sure.

Area & Population

Clickable Map of Transnistria
Clickable Map of Transnistria

Curiously enough, PMR officials give different numbers about the area: According to the National Bank, the country covers 3,567 km², according to the foreign ministery it's 4,163 km². As big as Rhode Island so to say. Transdniestr covers 1/8 of the overall area of →Republic of Moldova.

The population is about 630,000, the netto growth rate is negative. The population density is 160 inhabitants per km², which is one of the highest in the former Soviet Union.

The claim that Transdniestr is a state of Slavic minorities is not really true - the largest ethnic group turns out to be Moldovans - their share is 33.8%. Ukrainians as well as Russians are 28.8% each. There are other minorities such as Bulgarians, Gagauz (see →Comrat), Jewish and others.


If not atheistic, mostly Christian-Orthodox with very few exceptions.

Time zone

Eastern European time: GMT +02 hrs, with daylight-saving time (+1 hour) in summer.



De jure, the official language has to correspond with the share of ethnic groups. Which means that there are three official languages: →Moldovan, →Ukrainian and Russian. De facto, all you will see is Russian. Everything is in Russian, including menus, signposts, timetables and so on. English is not really helpful. It's definitely a very good idea to bring some Russian when you travel around. Anyway, the people are usually very nice, so it's not dramatic if you can't speak Russian (at least this was our impression - although I speak some Russian). Moldovan, if used, is written in Cyrillic script - as it was in Soviet Union times.


To Bendery (Tighina) Tiraspol - the capital of Transdniestr To the Ukraine To the Republic of Moldova back to Tabibito's top page The coat of arms - simply a copy of the Soviet Union coat of arms




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