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Economy of Gabon

Gabon enjoys a per capita income four times that of most nations of sub-Saharan Africa, its reliance on resource extraction industry releasing much of the population from extreme poverty.

Resources

Gabon depended on timber and manganese until oil was discovered offshore in the early 1970s. The oil sector now accounts for 50% of GDP and 80% of exports.

The government has recently announced it will reassess exactly how much iron ore the Belinga site contains before awarding the concession to a mining company, most likely to be China's CMEC, who temporarily secured the rights to the ore in 2007.

Animal husbandry

Animal husbandry is limited by the presence of the tsetse fly, though tsetse-resistant cattle have recently been imported from Senegal to a cattle project. In 2005 there were an estimated 212,000 hogs, 195,000 sheep, 90,000 goats, 35,000 head of cattle, and 3.1 million chickens.

Fishing

While there have been recent improvements in the fishing industry, it is still relatively undeveloped. Traditional fishing accounts for two-thirds of total catch. The waters off the Gabonese coast contain large quantities of fish. Gabonese waters are estimated to be able to support an annual catch of 15,000 tons of tuna and 12,000 tons of sardines.

Industry

Gabon's industry is centered on petroleum, manganese mining, and timber processing. Most industrial establishments are located near Libreville and Port-Gentil. imber-related concerns include five veneer plants and a large 50-year-old plywood factory in Port-Gentil, along with two other small plywood factories. Other industries include textile plants, cement factories, chemical plants, breweries, shipyards, and cigarette factories. Gabonese manufacturing is highly dependent on foreign inputs, and import costs rose significantly in 1994 when the CFA franc was devalued. Increased costs and oversized capacity have made the manufacturing sector less competitive and it mainly supplies the domestic market. The government has taken steps to privatize parastatal enterprises.

Because the Gabonese economy is dependent upon oil (crude oil accounts for over 80% of the country's exports, 43% of GDP, and 65% of state revenue), it is subject to worldwide price fluctuations. Gabon is sub-Saharan Africa's third-largest crude oil producer and exporter, although there are concerns that proven reserves are declining and production has declined as well.

This article is licensed under the GNU Free Documentation License. It uses material from the Wikipedia article "Economy Of Gabon"

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