Sustainable development in Gabon: For a better management of Gabon's land and natural resources.


A National Land Allocation Plan
to regulate land use in Gabon:

invested in the CAFI-Gabon program
key actors and partners involved
consultation workshops conducted
local referents selected
villages mapped


The National Land Allocation Commission (CNAT)

In accordance with the political vision of the Head of State, as set forth in the Emerging Gabon Strategic Plan, Gabon intends to regulate the use of its land through a National Land Allocation Plan.

An interministerial commission was thus established by the Gabonese government and placed under the supervision of the Minister in charge of sustainable development: National Land Allocation Commission (CNAT).

Created by Decree No. 00212/PR/MEPPDD of July 21, 2017 to develop the National Land Allocation Plan, it frames and defines land use, guarantees the compatibility of socio-economic activities, environmental integrity and optimization of the management of the country’s natural resources.


Since 2017, through the national strategic plan “Gabon Émergent” and its pillar “Green Gabon”, the Gabonese government has initiated a policy of reforms and initiatives for environmental protection, sustainable development and the fight against the effects of climate change. In 2017 Gabon joined the Central African Forest Initiative (CAFI), created in 2015 alongside the United Nations General Assembly and aiming at supporting Central African countries with high forest cover in the implementation of the Paris Climate Agreements, the fight against poverty and the achievement of the commitments of the Global Biodiversity Framework. The partnership brings together a coalition of international funding agencies, six Central African countries, implementing agencies and South-South partners. The challenge is to educe and minimize deforestation and forest degradation while maximizing development co-benefits.

The CAFI-Gabon Program is a true gas pedal of reforms in Central Africa to mitigate climate change, preserve forests, reduce poverty and contribute to sustainable development in 3 phases. The first phase, implemented over a five-year period between 2018 and 2022, provides funding of $18.4 million managed by the French Development Agency (AFD) as an implementing partner.

National Land
Plan (PNAT)

National Observation System of Natural Resources and Forests (SNORNF)



for a sustainable development

Located in the heart of the Congo Basin known as the planet's second lung, Gabon is one of Africa's largest forest countries: estimated at 23.6 million hectares (2015), its forest cover represents 88 % of the national territory, while the land use and forest change sector alone accounts for 93% of the country's greenhouse gas emissions

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tons of net CO2 absorption/year
0 Million USD
committed ex ante and payments on results
programs funded by CAFI for 30 million USD
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more carbon absorbed than emitted
0 %
of CAFI's investments are directed to Gabon

Gabon was thefirst African country o submit its Nationally Determined Contribution (NDC) for the COP21 in Paris in 2015. These commitments were reaffirmed at the Marrakech Conference (COP 22) in 2016. A commitment to preserving the environment that actually manifested very early, with the creation of a forestry fund as early as 1960 and a Ministry of Environmental Protection in 1972.

With the increasing shortage of oil resources, the use and economic development of renewable resources from forests is a major challenge for Gabon, which is committed to :

  • Reduce the exploitation of its forests to 11 million ha in 2025, compared to 16 in 2018. 2018.
  • Reduce greenhouse gas emissions from the sector of land use, change in land use and forests in Gabon by 50 % (2005-2025)
  • Support the development of projects in key sectors for strengthening the region’s economy, providing a viable alternative to deforestation: improving waterways, building small hydroelectric dams, strengthening soil irrigation systems, developing fishing, fish farming, aquaculture, and developing ecotourism.
  • Encouraging operators to implement management plans or production forests and pushing foresters to extend their rotations from 15 years to 25 years, with lower damage rates, instead of 10 years (2001 Forestry Code).

To do this, Gabon has initiated :

  • The creation in the early 2000s of 13 national parks which have allowed for the sanctuary of 3 million hectares of forest, representing 11 % of the national territory.
  • A National Climate Plan, the climate component of the national strategic plan “Gabon Émergent”, developed after the Copenhagen Conference in 2010 and implemented in November 2013. This Plan, formulated by Gabon’s National Climate Council, sets out short- and medium-term development strategies for sectors of activity with a strong impact on climate change, sectoral strategies for controlling greenhouse gas emissions, as well as strategies to adapt the territory to the effects of climate change (eg: rising sea levels).
  • The creation, in 2014, of a Sustainable Development Fund to finance the realization of programs and projects in line with the principles of sustainable development.
  • The creation, in 2014, of a Central Environmental Directorate in each ministry.

By allowing Gabon to focus its agricultural development on areas with the lowest carbon and conservation value, the country’s land allocation policy comes to ensure compatibility between territories, resources and socioeconomic activities :

  • One of the main objectives of the national strategic plan “Gabon Émergent” is to lead the country tofood self-sufficiency : by 2020, thanks to the “Graine” program (Gabonaise des réalisations agricoles et des initiatives des nationaux engagés), nearly 850 cooperatives have been formed, 400 independent farmers registered, 1,148 jobs created and 2,600 farmers trained.
  • Optimizing land management directly supports the development of certain strategic sectors for the country, including agriculture, forestry, mining and oil.

Gabon’s land allocation policy, via the PNAT and SNORNF programs, aims to recognize and defend people’s rights to land through :

  • A transparent and equity-based mechanism that addresses all populations affected by land allocation in Gabon: working in close collaboration with the country’s civil society actors, particularly those committed to environmental preservation.
  • A governmental decision-making tool that makes it possible toidentify and secure the rural land domain, and thus avoid land allocation conflicts and the expropriation of local and indigenous populations.
  • An inclusive program that particularly addresses women, youth and vulnerable populations, involving them in the entire solicitation and contribution process.
  • The development of participatory mapping to help secure land for rural and indigenous populations.