TUNIS- Tunisia's central bank cut its key interest rate by 100 basis points to 6.75% on Tuesday in response to the coronavirus, a central bank source said, its first since during the 2011 revolution that ditched autocratic rule for democracy.

It follows sharp interest rate cuts in leading economies as the virus has shut down swathes of activity. Tunisia, where tourism makes up nearly a tenth of gross domestic product, has closed all its air, sea and land borders.

Its last rate cut, by 50 basis points, came in June 2011 as the revolution convulsed the political system and economy, leading to a sharp fall in GDP.

Tunisia has struggled since then to put its economy back on to a sound footing, with years of weak growth, declining public services, fiscal deficits and mounting debt.

An International Monetary Fund loan programme expires in April and the new government, formed in February after months of political wrangling following October's election, has said it is seeking to renew it.

(Reporting by Tarek Amara; writing by Angus McDowall; editing by Nick Macfie) ((Alaa.Swilam@thomsonreuters.com;))