Foreign aid accounted for 20% of Mali's budget in 1999. In order to fulfill its IMF responsibilities, the country has been privatizing companies for the past several years. Only about 14 companies remain in the hands of the government. Mali was judged eligible for the Heavily Indebted Poor Countries (HIPC) initiative and has been benefiting from it since 2000 as a budgetary support.
The US Central Intelligence Agency (CIA) estimates that in 2002 Mali's central government took in revenues of approximately $764 million and had expenditures of $828 million. Overall, the government registered a deficit of approximately $64 million. External debt totaled $3.3 billion.