Chişinău (also known as Kishinev, Russian: Кишинёв Kishinyov), is the capital and largest municipality of Moldova. It is also its main industrial and commercial centre and is located in the middle of the country, on the river Bîc.
Economically, the city is the most prosperous in Moldova and is one of the main transportation hubs of the region.
As the most important municipality in Moldova, Chişinău has a broad range of educational facilities.
The proportion of green spaces in the city is one of the highest among major European cities.
According to one version, the name comes from the archaic Romanian word chişla (meaning „spring”, „source of water”) and nouă („new”), because it was built around a small spring. Nowadays, the spring is located at the corner of Pushkin and Albişoara streets.
Its Hungarian name is Kisjenő (kis „small” + the eponym „Jenő”), from which the Romanian name originates.
Chişinău is also known in Russian as Кишинёв (Kishinyov). It is written Kişinöv in the Latin Gagauz alphabet. It was also written as Кишинэу in the Moldovan Cyrillic alphabet in Soviet times. Historically, the English language name for the city, „Kishinev,” was based on the modified Russian one because it entered the English language via Russian at the time Chişinău was part of the Russian Empire.
Besides the city itself, the municipality comprises 34 other suburban localities, and is subdivided into sectors, each comprising a part of the city itself and several suburbs. The municipality in its totality elects a mayor and a local council, which then name 5 pretors, one for each sector.
The five sectors of Chişinău are: