Rivermate | Gabon flag


Employee Rights and Protections

Explore workers' rights and legal protections in Gabon


In Gabon, the Labour Code outlines specific grounds upon which an employer can lawfully terminate an employee's contract. These include economic reasons such as restructuring, financial difficulties, technological changes, or cessation of the company's activities. Disciplinary reasons can also be grounds for termination, including serious misconduct like gross negligence, willful misconduct, insubordination, theft, violence, etc., or repeated minor misconduct after warnings and potential sanctions. An employee's inability to perform the job due to lack of skills, prolonged illness, or disability that prevents work performance can also be a valid reason for termination. It's important to note that the employer bears the burden of proof in demonstrating the validity of the dismissal grounds.

Notice Requirements

The required notice period for termination in Gabon is determined by the employee's length of service:

  • Less than 1 year of service: 15 days' notice
  • 1-3 years of service: 1 month's notice
  • 3-5 years of service: 2 months' notice
  • 5-10 years of service: 3 months' notice
  • 10-15 years of service: 4 months' notice
  • 15-20 years of service: 5 months' notice
  • 20-30 years of service: 6 months' notice

Severance Pay

Employees in Gabon are entitled to severance pay upon termination, except in the case of serious misconduct. The severance pay calculation is based on the employee's length of service and salary. The specific calculation method will depend on relevant company policies or collective bargaining agreements. The Labour Code of Gabon provides guidelines for the calculation method.


In Gabon, anti-discrimination laws cover a range of protected characteristics. These include race, color, and national origin, with the Labour Code of Gabon prohibiting employment discrimination on these grounds. Discrimination based on sex is also prohibited in employment and access to goods and services. Gabon has signed the UN Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities (CRPD), committing to promoting non-discrimination against people with disabilities. The Labour Code also prohibits discrimination based on an individual's political opinions. Furthermore, Gabonese law guarantees freedom of religion.

Redress Mechanisms

Employees who believe they have been subjected to unlawful discrimination in Gabon have several avenues for seeking redress. Many companies have grievance mechanisms for addressing discrimination complaints. Employees can also file complaints with the Labour Inspectorate, which has the power to investigate and mediate disputes. Additionally, employees can pursue legal action for discrimination in the courts.

Employer Responsibilities

Employers in Gabon have certain responsibilities to prevent and address discrimination. They should develop and implement anti-discrimination policies that prohibit discrimination and outline procedures for handling complaints. Employers should also provide regular training on anti-discrimination laws and workplace policies. All complaints of discrimination should be taken seriously and thorough investigations should be conducted. If necessary, employers should take appropriate disciplinary action against those found to have engaged in discriminatory behavior.

Working conditions

In Gabon, the legal workweek is 40 hours. Overtime work is allowed but regulated, with employers required to pay additional compensation for overtime hours. The specific overtime rates and limits may be determined by collective bargaining agreements or individual employment contracts. For those in the agricultural sector, working hours are calculated annually, with a maximum of 2,400 hours per year.

Employees are entitled to a minimum of 10 consecutive hours of rest between workdays. In some industries, a longer rest break may be required. Additionally, employees are entitled to one full day of rest per week, typically on Sunday. Gabon observes several public holidays throughout the year, during which employees are generally entitled to paid time off.

Ergonomic Requirements

While Gabon's labor laws don't have extensive provisions specifically focused on ergonomics, employers have a general duty to ensure a safe and healthy working environment to prevent accidents and injuries. They must also take measures to protect workers' physical and mental health. This includes considering the design of the workplace for comfort and to minimize repetitive strain injuries.

Health and safety

In Gabon, a framework of health and safety regulations is enforced to protect the well-being of workers. These regulations clearly outline the responsibilities of both employers and employees, and designate enforcement agencies to ensure compliance.

Employer Obligations

Employers in Gabon are obligated to provide a safe workplace. The Gabonese Labour Code and related health and safety regulations mandate employers to take all necessary measures to ensure the safety and health of their employees at work. This includes preventing accidents, occupational illnesses, and fires.

Employers are also required to conduct risk assessments. These assessments identify potential hazards in the workplace and necessitate implementing control measures to mitigate risks.

Furthermore, employers must equip their employees with knowledge. They are required to provide training and information on health and safety risks, safe work practices, and emergency procedures.

Employee Rights

Employees in Gabon have several key rights regarding health and safety in the workplace:

  • Right to a Safe Work Environment: Employees have the right to work in a safe and healthy environment, free from foreseeable risks.
  • Refusal of Unsafe Work: Employees have the right to refuse work that they reasonably believe presents an imminent danger to their safety or health.
  • Right to Information: Employees have the right to be informed about potential hazards in the workplace and the measures taken to control them.

Enforcement Agencies

The primary enforcement agency for health and safety regulations in Gabon is the Labour Inspectorate within the Ministry of Labour. The Labour Inspectorate conducts inspections of workplaces to ensure compliance with health and safety regulations.

Additional Considerations

While not explicitly mentioned in the Labour Code, some regulations might be established through collective bargaining agreements or ministerial decrees. Consulting the Ministry of Labour's website or reputable legal resources in Gabon can provide more comprehensive information.

Rivermate | A 3d rendering of earth

Hire your employees globally with confidence

We're here to help you on your global hiring journey.