Gabon Geography

Climate

Gabon has a humid equatorial tropical climate with average temperatures around 25 ° C (maximum around 32 ° C, hardly below 20 ° C). The rainy season prevails from October to May and the dry season from June to September. In some parts of the country, the rainy season is interrupted by a small dry season (December to January / February). The annual rainfall (between 1 000 and 3 000 mm) is higher in the south and on the coast than in the north and inland.

Vegetation

Around 88% of the country is covered by tropical rainforest; Of this, around a third are primeval forest and two thirds are secondary forests, which are particularly prevalent in the more intensively managed coastal regions. The rest of the country is covered by savannahs (wet, dry savannas in the southeast). – Due to the diverse vegetation and fauna, the protected area of ​​Lopé-Okanda was declared a World Heritage Site by UNESCO in 2007.

Population

According to threergroup, almost 90% of the population are Gabonese citizens and, apart from small minorities, they belong to almost 50 Bantu-speaking peoples who are divided into six groups. The three largest of them – Fang (in the north), Mérié (in the southwest) and Mbede (in the southeast) – make up almost two-thirds of the total population. Another group is formed by the indigenous pygmies (1% of the population). Over 10% of the population are foreigners, most of whom immigrated from West and Central Africa during the oil boom. The approximately 11,000 French continue to play a major role in the economy and education. With an average of 8 residents per km 2(2017) is one of the most sparsely populated countries in Africa. While vast rainforest areas are practically uninhabited, the industrial centers of Libreville and Port-Gentil are particularly attractive. Overall, 88% of the population live in urban settlements.

The biggest cities in Gabon

Largest cities (population, 2013 census)
Libreville 703 900
Port Gentil 136 500
Franceville 110 600
Owendo 79 300
Oyem 60 700

Religion

The constitution guarantees freedom of religion. All religious communities are legally equal. Various surveys on religious affiliation paint a mixed picture: About 42-53% of the population belong to the Catholic Church (Archdiocese of Libreville with four suffragan dioceses and an Apostolic Vicariate), about 14-24% belong to the three Protestant churches that emerged from French and North American missionary work several small Protestant communities; there are also congregations of independent African churches. Between 6 and 15% of the population are Muslims (mostly foreigners from West Africa). Forms of traditional African religiosity are still widespread and are practiced exclusively by around 6–10% of the population.

Major Cities

Owendo

Owendo, southeast suburb of Libreville and deep-water port on the north coast of the Gabonese estuary, Gabon, with (2013) 79,300 residents.

Medical University (founded in 2002), export v. a. of manganese and wood; Cement factory; Starting point of the Transgabunbahn to Franceville, airport.

Franceville

Franceville [fras vil], provincial in Southeast Gabon, on Ogowe, 428 m above sea level, (2013) 110,600 residents.

Seat of a Catholic bishop; University (founded 1986); international medical research center; Food, wood and building materials industries; nearby manganese ore, gold and diamond mining, coffee and sugar cane cultivation; Transgabunbahn to Libreville; international Airport.

Franceville was founded in 1880 by P. S. de Brazza.

Port Gentil

Port-Gentil [p ɔ r ʒ ã ti], the provincial capital, Economic and petroleum center of Gabon, on the western island of Ogowedeltas, second largest (2013) 136 500 residents city in the country.

Petroleum refinery, major wood processing (e.g. one of the largest plywood factories in the world), cement factory, food, textile, chemical industry; Deep-water port (largest transshipment point in the country), international airport.

Port-Gentil, founded in 1885 as a customs post and expanded into a town from 1932, owes its economic boom to the oil fields discovered in 1955.

Libreville

Libreville [librə vil], capital of Gabon, on the north bank of the Gabunästuars, with (2013) 703 900 residents, the seat of a university and various research institutes.

Libreville was founded in 1849 to reintroduce freed slaves to Africa.

Gabon Country and People

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