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Gabon

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Background

Ruled by autocratic presidents since independence from France in 1960, Gabon introduced a multiparty system and a new constitution in the early 1990s that allowed for a more transparent electoral process and for reforms of governmental institutions. A small population, abundant natural resources, and considerable foreign support have helped make Gabon one of the more prosperous black African countries.

Gabon enjoys a per capita income four times that of most nations of sub-Saharan Africa. 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, the economy is hobbled by poor fiscal management. In 1992, the fiscal deficit widened to 2.4% of GDP, and Gabon failed to settle arrears on its bilateral debt, leading to a cancellation of rescheduling agreements with official and private creditors. Devaluation of its Francophone currency by 50% on 12 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 mandate progress in privatization and fiscal discipline. France provided additional financial support in January 1997 after Gabon had 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.

Holidays
Jan 1 - New Year's Day
Jan 21* - Eid al-Adha (Feast of the Sacrifice)
Mar 12 - Renovation Day
Mar 28~ - Easter Monday
May 1 - Labour Day
May 6 - Martyrs’ Day
May 16~ - Whit Monday
Aug 15 - Assumption
Aug 16 - Independence(National) Day
Nov 1 - All Saints' Day
Nov 14-16* - Eid al-Fitr (End of Ramadan)
Dec 25 - Christmas Day

Ps: Muslim festivals(*) are timed according to local sightings of various phases of the moon and the dates given above are approximations. Besides, the Festivals' dates(~) are also subject to change in every year.

Phone Codes

Country Code: 241
Outgoing International Code: 00
No area codes are required.

Resources

Market Research

CIA - The World Factbook - Gabonese Republic
This website indicates a wide range of detail information about Gabon by introducing under 8 different fields as its geography, people, government, economy, communications, transportation, military, transnational issues.

About Gabon
There is available to find out Gabonese general outlook on the issues of its social and business profile, passport/visa, money, accommodation, government, duty free, health and so forth.

Business Directory - Gabon
Wow-directory creates cross-referenced categories in business opportunities for Gabon as business to business, classifieds, cooperatives, directories, organizations & trade.

Gabon Business
Mbendi serves as a directory providing an ultimate African Business Source for the potential investors seeking new business opportunities in Gabon including the list of industries for Gabon.

Gabon News
There is available to find out Gabonese business, economic and political news on line.

OPIC Links - Investor's Information Gateway for Gabon
There is available country database information links which are efficient for the new investors planned to do business in Gabon including the contact lists of the institutions, organization related to Gabonese business.

U.S. Department of State: Country Commercial Guide: Gabon
The country commercial reports are prepared annually by U.S. Embassies with the assistance of several U.S. Government agencies that basically offers a comprehensive outlook at Gabonese commercial environments, using economic, political, and market analysis.

Gabon Online
There is available to get comprehensive information about all fields related to Gabonese Republic via providing a business directory and gateway to the websites for Gabon.

UK Trade & Investment - Gabon
UK Trade & Investment is the Government organisation that supports both UK companies trading internationally and overseas enterprises seeking to locate in the UK.

U.S. Department of State - Bureau of Consular Affairs - For Gabon
U.S. Bureau of Consular Affairs creates a wide range of research named as Consular Information Sheet about Gabon in terms of analyzing its social, political, cultural & economic environments.

Trade Information

Embassy Listings For Gabon
There is listed the embassies of Gabonese Republic including the embassies' contact information.

The Government of Gabon
AdmiNet creates useful webpage for Gabon in order to provide information about the government of Gabon.

Trade Guide for Gabon
There is available to get comprehensive information not only about Gabonese imports, export regulations and other formalities and documents related to commercial transactions but also main exported and imported products & trading partners in Gabon and so forth.

 
 
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