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Seedlings being inserted into soils in a nursery, Olam.

Gabon

Olam began operations in Gabon in 1999. Today we have a number of strategic partnerships with the Gabonese Republic which include palm oil, rubber and fertiliser.

Olam Gabon’s operations are tied together by the Gabon Special Economic Zone (GSEZ) and its broader port and logistics ecosystem under the banner of ARISE, an affiliate company.

We chose to invest in Gabon due to its political stability, logistics potential, its favourable agri-climate, thriving economy and the synergy of Olam’s objectives with those of the Republic’s ‘Emerging Gabon’ strategy, in particular their commitment to sustainable development. In turn, the Republic of Gabon was keen to develop a local agricultural economy (around 60% of food is imported), diversify from fossil fuel exports, create employment and reduce poverty (approximately 33% of people live at or below the poverty line).

Through our investments we are now the country’s largest private sector employer, generating significant employment opportunities in rural areas. The strength of the Olam Gabon team lies in our expertise across the various businesses and global diversity across cultures

While we continue to retain some foreign specialists within each business, the number of Gabonese workers continues to rise – we now employ over 9,000 Gabonese nationals.

The success of Olam Gabon's agribusiness operations led to the organic expansion into logistics and infrastructure to facilitate Gabon's development. The GSEZ was created and has become the flagship business in ARISE, an affiliate venture between Olam and first-rate institutional investors such as the Africa Finance Corporation. Born in Gabon, ARISE has since replicated its industrial ecosystem business model across several West African markets.

Operations Overview

Olam Palm Gabon: 60 % : Republic of Gabon 40%

We have planted 64,000 hectares of oil palm and we are protecting 72,000 hectares of High Conservation Value forest and other areas such as buffer zones. Two plantation lots have already been RSPO certified and we are on track for 100% certification by 2021. We have 3 processing facilities.

Olam Rubber Gabon: Olam 60% : Republic of Gabon 40%

We have planted 11,000 hectares of rubber trees and are protecting around 25,000 hectares of High Conservation Value areas. We have 1 processing facility.

Gabon Special Economic Zone: Olam 40.5% : Republic of Gabon 38.5% : AFC 21%

1,126 hectare multi-product Nkok SEZ with over 80 investors from 18 different nationalities and 15 producing industries. GSEZ has also undertaken ports and infrastructure projects.

Gabon Fertiliser Company*: Olam 80% : Republic of Gabon 20%

The JV company was set up to build a urea-ammonia fertiliser plant of 1.3 million tonnes per annum capacity.


Sotrader: Olam 49% : Republic of Gabon 51%

Smallholder co-operative programme for food crops and oil palm.

Gabon Special Economic Zone: Olam 40.5% : Republic of Gabon 38.5% : AFC 21%

1,126 hectare multi-product Nkok SEZ with over 80 investors from 18 different nationalities and 15 producing industries. GSEZ has also undertaken ports and infrastructure projects.

Gabon Fertiliser Company*: Olam 80% : Republic of Gabon 20%

The JV company was set up to build a urea-ammonia fertiliser plant of 1.3 million tonnes per annum capacity.

Sotrader: Olam 49% : Republic of Gabon 51%

Smallholder co-operative programme for food crops and oil palm.

Olam board visiting the team in Gabon.
Meet the Team

“With the aim to generate long-term value for smallholder farmers, we have implemented a local-impact strategy in 2 regions well known for their important output of palm oil.”

We employ over 15,000 people across 11 locations

Darshan Raiyani, Olam's Country Head of Gabon.
Darshan Raiyani,
Country Head, Olam Gabon Plantations

Want to Know More?

Growing Palm Oil’s Capacity for Good

Read the blog post from our Managing Director & CEO Palm & Rubber as he shares his view on the palm oil debate. 

A nursery employee transporting a wheelbarrow of young palm plants for planting into the plantation, Gabon, Olam.

Palm Dashboard

In January 2018, we also launched our Palm Dashboard to chart progress against our roadmap of commitments detailed in the Sustainable Palm Oil Policy.

An infographic of Olam's Palm Quarterly Dashboard, showing progress against commitments, Gabon, Olam.

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