In a bid to lessen the economic impact of the global coronavirus pandemic, Tunisia’s central bank on 17 March cut its key interest rate by 100 basis points to 6.75% - its first cut since 2011. The bank also said businesses would be able to defer payment of loans by six months and access new ones. But these measures pale in comparison to the scale of the task ahead.

Like much of the rest of the world, the coronavirus outbreak has forced Tunisia to impose strict measures on the movement of people, bringing much of the economy to a standstill. With the country in lockdown, the key tourism sector is set for a colossal downturn this year (MEES, 20 March). (CONTINUED - 194 WORDS)