Gabon is a relatively small African nation (30th in size in Africa), with a national population of just 1.5 million, or less than 7 inhabitants per hectare on average. Gabon is home to the ecologically significant Congo Rainforest system that it shares with its neighbors: Cameroon, Equatorial Guinea, and the Republic of the Congo. The Congo Rainforest is the second-largest connected forest system in the world (surpassed only by the Amazon). Due to a forest cover estimated at 88 percent of the national landmass (approximately 23.5 million hectares), the Gabonese woodlands are equivalent in size to the forests of the Republic of the Congo, and larger than those in Cameroon.
Despite a strong legislative framework for forest management, illegal logging is still considered widespread in Gabon. Governance reforms are underway with political commitment to achieve certification for all forest concessions by 2022.