In 1994, the government began a three-year effort to privatize the national industries. Loans from the IMF, World Bank, EBRD, and other financial institutions and foreign countries aimed at eliminating the government's budget deficit. However, by 1996, external public debt exceeded $353 million with annual debt service payments exceeding $55 million. Loans to Armenia since 1993 total over $800 million.
The US Central Intelligence Agency (CIA) estimates that in 2001 Armenia's central government took in revenues of approximately $358 million and had expenditures of $458 million. Overall, the government registered a deficit of approximately $100 million. External debt totaled $839 million.