Gabon, officially the Gabonese Republic, is a sovereign state on the west coast of Central Africa, bordered by the Republic of the Congo, Cameroon, Equatorial Guinea, and the Gulf of Guinea. Gabon has a total area of almost 270,000 square kilometers (76th in the world) with a population density of around 5.5 people per square kilometer, which ranks 216th in the world. This makes Gabon one of the least densely populated countries on earth. The capital and largest city is Libreville, which has a population estimated at 582,000 in 2015. While the population of Gabon has been increasing steadily since the 1960s, it declined between 1900 and 1940.
Pygmy peoples were the first inhabitants of Gabon, although they were mostly absorbed by the Bantu tribes. Nearly all Gabonese today are of Bantu origin, but there are at least 40 ethnic groups in the country. It is believed that the Fang are the largest at 29%, but recent census information favors the Nzebi people. Other groups include the Myene, Kota, Shira, Puru and Kande. There are also several Pygmy groups, including the Baka, Kota and Bongo. The Pygmies were the earliest inhabitants of the area, although they were mostly replaced and absorbed by the Bantu tribes.
Gabon has relatively little ethnic tension, especially compared to other countries in Sub-Saharan Africa, as its ethnic groups are spread throughout the country and intermarriage between groups is common.
Gabon has the Human Development Indexes in Sub-Saharan Africa. Abundant petroleum, foreign private investment, and a low population density have helped to make the country one of the most prosperous in Sub-Saharan Africa with the third highest GDP per capita in the area.