How to find out what life is really like in PMR

Unlike the eye-witness reports here, most other commentators on Pridnestrovie have never been to the country. They only recycle what they pick up here and there, and many don't bother to fact-check. Sometimes, however, journalists do come to visit ... in the morning, before heading back to Chisinau or Odessa that same afternoon.

PMR's flag

What these superficial "hacks" see during their few hours in Pridnestrovie then forms the basis for their conclusions. They see uniformed border guards who speak a language that they don't understand, they see a couple of old Lenin statues and red stars which we kept for historic reasons, and then decide that "this must be a Stalinist dictatorship"... This is the quick and sensationalist approach which grabs the headlines. But it is also the wrong approach because it doesn't square with reality. To fully understand the dynamic civic life of the country, a less superficial style of reporting is required.

Digging for facts
First of all, it helps to speak Russian; the most widely used of Pridnestrovie's three official languages (the other two are Ukrainian and Moldavian). That way, you can read the newspapers and see for yourself that there is no censorship in Pridnestrovie and that freedom of expression is indeed completely free. You can also watch our TV stations, both private and public. There, political debates and criticism often fill the airwaves, as in any other vibrant European democracy.

Participant in a PMR democracy march

And, most importantly, a working knowledge of Russian will help you talk to the people in the street: ordinary Pridnestrovians who will be happy to tell you the good, bad and ugly of living in Pridnestrovie. There are no restrictions on talking to anyone, anywhere. You can go where you want and talk to whomever you meet. You don't have a "minder" or a KGB-shadow (they don't exist in Pridnestrovie), and it is legal to take pictures anywhere in the country except at military installations (a normal rule found in most of the world). Speaking of military installations, you will discover when you visit us that they are few and far between. Pridnestrovie is not a militaristic country.

Comparing Pridnestrovie to its neighbors
Don't compare PMR to the U.S. or to Germany, France or any other large first world country. It is not there yet in terms of material wealth. But do compare the country to its two neighbors, and you will discover that PMR compares very favorably indeed.

Life in Pridnestrovie is almost upbeat. There is a lot of emphasis on music, and culture in general. People are optimistic on the country's future, and they work hard to make that future a reality. Unemployment (6%) and tax rates (15%) are low. Salaries are higher than elsewhere in the region. Pensions are paid on time, and the government provides free health care and education.

When you compare PMR to its our neighbors, and especially to Moldova, you will also see that it has a functional government by the people for the people. The infrastructure is being repaired and in some cases expanded. Parks are spotless, the whole country is clean and orderly, and environmental protection ranks high. They are actual deeds that you can see with your own eyes when you visit Pridnestrovie. "What others are saying..."

PMR news

  • Appeals help Baptists in Tiraspol
  • Abkhazia expects int'l recognition of its de-facto independence
  • Tiraspol Zoo draws huge crowds on opening day
  • Teenage abortions double in Pridnestrovie