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Prime Minister Giuseppe Conte has praised his compatriots for their discipline in the fight against the pandemic.

“If the worst is behind us, we owe it to the citizens who have changed their lifestyles,” Conte said in a Thursday speech to the Chamber of Deputies in Rome.

However, the challenges of the next few months would be even more difficult, he said. To promote the tourism industry, Conte called on Italy’s 60 million citizens to holiday in their own country.

He warned young people in particular the time was not yet ripe for high spirits, following reports of gatherings and celebration.

In addition, he demanded more commitment from the banks.

“The banking system can and must do more to provide loans,” he said.

Conte announced that Italy would shortly begin testing the planned anti-coronavirus app Immuni. This is intended to make it easier for infected people to located anyone they have contacted.

Italy recorded 156 new deaths from the COVID-19 epidemic on Thursday, against 161 the day before, the Civil Protection Agency said.

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