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    Gabon Index 2006

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    Gabon Economy - 2006

      Economy - overview:
      Gabon enjoys a per capita income four times that of most of sub-Saharan African nations. This has supported a sharp decline in extreme poverty; yet, because of high income inequality, a large proportion of the population remains poor. Gabon depended on timber and manganese until oil was discovered offshore in the early 1970s. The oil sector now accounts for 50% of GDP. Gabon continues to face fluctuating prices for its oil, timber, and manganese exports. Despite the abundance of natural wealth, poor fiscal management hobbles the economy. Devaluation of its currency by 50% in January 1994 sparked a one-time inflationary surge, to 35%; the rate dropped to 6% in 1996. The IMF provided a one-year standby arrangement in 1994-95, a three-year Enhanced Financing Facility (EFF) at near commercial rates beginning in late 1995, and stand-by credit of $119 million in October 2000. Those agreements mandated progress in privatization and fiscal discipline. France provided additional financial support in January 1997 after Gabon met IMF targets for mid-1996. In 1997, an IMF mission to Gabon criticized the government for overspending on off-budget items, overborrowing from the central bank, and slipping on its schedule for privatization and administrative reform. The rebound of oil prices in 1999-2000 helped growth, but drops in production hampered Gabon from fully realizing potential gains. In December 2000, Gabon signed a new agreement with the Paris Club to reschedule its official debt. A follow-up bilateral repayment agreement with the US was signed in December 2001. Gabon signed a 14-month Stand-By Arrangement with the IMF in May 2004, and received Paris Club debt rescheduling later that year. Short-term progress depends on an upbeat world economy and fiscal and other adjustments in line with IMF policies.

      GDP (purchasing power parity):
      $8.047 billion (2005 est.)

      GDP (official exchange rate):
      $7.154 billion (2005 est.)

      GDP - real growth rate:
      2.1% (2005 est.)

      GDP - per capita (PPP):
      $5,800 (2005 est.)

      GDP - composition by sector:
      agriculture: 6%
      industry: 58.8%
      services: 35.1% (2005 est.)

      Labor force:
      640,000 (2005 est.)

      Labor force - by occupation:
      agriculture: 60%
      industry: 15%
      services: 25%

      Unemployment rate:
      21% (1997 est.)

      Population below poverty line:

      Household income or consumption by percentage share:
      lowest 10%: NA%
      highest 10%: NA%

      Inflation rate (consumer prices):
      1.5% (2005 est.)

      Investment (gross fixed):
      24.5% of GDP (2005 est.)

      revenues: $2.463 billion
      expenditures: $1.618 billion; including capital expenditures of $325 million (2005 est.)

      Public debt:
      29.5% of GDP (2005 est.)

      Agriculture - products:
      cocoa, coffee, sugar, palm oil, rubber; cattle; okoume (a tropical softwood); fish

      petroleum extraction and refining; manganese, gold; chemicals, ship repair, food and beverages, textiles, lumbering and plywood, cement

      Industrial production growth rate:
      1.6% (2002 est.)

      Electricity - production:
      1.487 billion kWh (2003)

      Electricity - consumption:
      1.383 billion kWh (2003)

      Electricity - exports:
      0 kWh (2003)

      Electricity - imports:
      0 kWh (2003)

      Oil - production:
      268,900 bbl/day (2005 est.)

      Oil - consumption:
      12,250 bbl/day (2003 est.)

      Oil - exports:
      NA bbl/day

      Oil - imports:
      NA bbl/day

      Oil - proved reserves:
      1.921 billion bbl (2005 est.)

      Natural gas - production:
      90 million cu m (2003 est.)

      Natural gas - consumption:
      90 million cu m (2003 est.)

      Natural gas - exports:
      0 cu m (2001 est.)

      Natural gas - imports:
      0 cu m (2001 est.)

      Natural gas - proved reserves:
      33.98 billion cu m (2005)

      Current account balance:
      $1.11 billion (2005 est.)

      $5.813 billion f.o.b. (2005 est.)

      Exports - commodities:
      crude oil 77%, timber, manganese, uranium (2001)

      Exports - partners:
      US 53%, China 8.5%, France 7.3% (2004)

      $1.533 billion f.o.b. (2005 est.)

      Imports - commodities:
      machinery and equipment, foodstuffs, chemicals, construction materials

      Imports - partners:
      France 43.8%, US 6.3%, UK 5.9% (2004)

      Reserves of foreign exchange and gold:
      $525 million (2005 est.)

      Debt - external:
      $3.857 billion (2005 est.)

      Economic aid - recipient:
      $331 million (1995)

      Currency (code):
      Communaute Financiere Africaine franc (XAF); note - responsible authority is the Bank of the Central African States

      Exchange rates:
      Communaute Financiere Africaine francs (XAF) per US dollar - 527.47 (2005), 528.29 (2004), 581.2 (2003), 696.99 (2002), 733.04 (2001)

      Fiscal year:
      calendar year

      NOTE: The information regarding Gabon on this page is re-published from the 2006 World Fact Book of the United States Central Intelligence Agency. No claims are made regarding the accuracy of Gabon Economy 2006 information contained here. All suggestions for corrections of any errors about Gabon Economy 2006 should be addressed to the CIA.

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    Revised 06-Jun-06
    Copyright © 2006 Photius Coutsoukis (all rights reserved)