The capital of Moldova is Chişinău. The local language is Romanian, based on the Latin alphabet, but Russian is widely used. Moldova is a multi-ethnic republic that has suffered from violent ethnic conflict. In 1994, this conflict led to the creation of the self-proclaimed Transnistria Republic in eastern Moldova, which has its own government and currency but is not recognized by any other country. Economic links have been re-established between these two parts of Moldova despite failure in political negotiations. The major religion in Moldova is Orthodox Christian. Moldova's population is occupied mainly in food production and processing. Once known as "the garden" of the Soviet Union, Moldova has now lost most of its traditional Russian markets for agricultural products and is exploring new international markets.