The thesis attempts at assessing dynamics of economic viability of Moldova’s break-away region Transnistria living under frozen conflict. By assuming that Transnistria is a small developing island state, Briguglio’s methodology of juxtaposition of structural economic vulnerability and resilience was employed for the research. A quantitative method of calculating the Economic Vulnerability Index was combined with a qualitative analysis of expert interviews to estimate the structural economic vulnerability and resilience of the separatist republic respectively, and draw conclusions on the region’s economic viability. Also other theoretical and empirical studies on SIDS were utilized to explain the pattern of economic viability under frozen conflict and point to possible implications for the future. Finally, suggestions are made on possible use of the methodology elaborated in the research in similar studies on other de facto states.
Key words: de facto state, economic viability, Economic Vulnerability Index (EVI), frozen conflict, resilience, secession, small island developing state, state building, structural economic vulnerability