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The UAE has drawn plaudits for its rapid and extensive response to the Covid-19 pandemic. Mobile testing centres have been opened in every emirate, public areas and transport services have been sterilised and in late April the authorities said they had carried out more than 1m tests. (By end-April they had reported almost 12,000 confirmed cases of whom 98 had died.) Around the start of Ramadan on 24 April, the government began to ease the restrictions on residents, with malls reopening and public transport resuming. That offered some much-needed hope to businesses, many of which rely on the holy month as a key revenue-earning period.
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