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    Gabon Economy 1997

      Economy - overview Notwithstanding its serious ongoing economic problems, Gabon enjoysa per capita income three times that of most nations of sub-Saharan Africa.Gabon depended on timber and manganese until oil was discovered offshore inthe early 1970s. The oil sector now accounts for 50% of GDP. Real GDP growthhas been feeble since 1991 and Gabon continues to face fluctuating pricesfor its oil, timber, manganese, and uranium exports. Despite an abundanceof natural wealth and a manageable rate of population growth, the economyis 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 privatecreditors. Devaluation of its Francophone currency by 50% on 12 January 1994sparked 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 and a three-yearEnhanced Financing Facility (EFF) at near commercial rates beginning in late1995. Those agreements mandate progress in privatization and fiscal discipline.France provided additional financial support in January 1997 after Gabon hadmet IMF targets for mid-1996.

      GDP purchasing power parity - $6.3 billion (1996 est.)

      GDP - real growth rate 2.6% (1996 est.)

      GDP - per capita purchasing power parity - $5,400 (1996 est.)

      GDP - composition by sector
      agriculture: 8.2%
      industry: 44.7%
      services: 47.1% (1993 est.)

      Inflation rate - consumer price index 6.2% (1996 est.)

      Labor force NA
      by occupation: agriculture 65%, industry and commerce, services

      Unemployment rate 10%-14% (1993 est.)

      revenues: $1.3 billion
      expenditures: $1.6 billion, including capital expenditures of $311 million (1993 est.)

      Industries food and beverage; textile; lumbering and plywood; cement; petroleumextraction and refining; manganese, uranium, and gold mining; chemicals; ship repair

      Industrial production growth rate NA%

      Electricity - capacity 301,000 kW (1992)

      Electricity - production 930 million kWh (1994)

      Electricity - consumption per capita 744 kWh (1994 est.)

      Agriculture - products cocoa, coffee, sugar, palm oil; rubber; okoume (a tropical softwood);cattle; small fishing operations (provide a catch of about 30,000 metric tons)

      total value: $2.7 billion (f.o.b., 1995)
      commodities: crude oil 78%, timber 14%, manganese 4%, uranium
      partners: US 59%, France 12%, Japan 4%, China 5%, Spain, Germany

      total value: $700 million (f.o.b., 1995)
      commodities: machinery and equipment, foodstuffs, chemicals, petroleum products,construction materials
      partners : France 39%, Cote d'Ivoire 13%, US 6%, Netherlands 5%, Japan

      Debt - external $3.9 billion (1996 )

      Economic aid $NA

      Currency 1 Communaute Financiere Africaine franc (CFAF) = 100 centimes

      Exchange rates CFA francs (CFAF) per US$1 - 541.69 (January 1997), 511.55 (1996), 499.15(1995), 555.20 (1994), 283.16 (1993), 264.69 (1992)
      note: beginning 12 January 1994, the CFA franc was devalued to CFAF 100 perFrench franc from CFAF 50 at which it had been fixed since 1948

      Fiscal year calendar year

      NOTE: The information regarding Gabon on this page is re-published from the 1997 World Fact Book of the United States Central Intelligence Agency. No claims are made regarding the accuracy of Gabon Economy 1997 information contained here. All suggestions for corrections of any errors about Gabon Economy 1997 should be addressed to the CIA.

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    Revised 06-Mar-02
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