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Daily brief: Top 7 business stories October 26, 2016

Here are the top seven business headlines you don’t want to miss out on today.

DXB recorded 7 million travellers in September

September traffic figures at the Dubai International Airport (DXB) rose to reach more than seven million travellers crossing through its terminals. This figure is becoming the norm at the airport – it has been reached six times in nine months.

Smart Buildability Index launched in UAE

His Highness Sheikh Mohamed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Vice-President and Prime Minister of the UAE and Ruler of Dubai, has launched the Smart Buildability Index for the construction sector in the country.

He noted during the launch that strong efforts need to be made in the field of Smart solutions to accelerate the implementation of the UAE Vision 2021.

AED1 billion Gate Avenue Project begins at DIFC

Construction will shortly begin on the Gate Avenue development at DIFC, a new urban premium lifestyle, cultural and entertainment project located at the heart of the Dubai International Financial Centre (DIFC).

Habtoor Leighton Group (HLG), a leading specialist contractor in the region, was awarded the AED500 million contract, meaning construction and land preparation can get underway for one of the biggest property projects in Dubai.

Oil prices drop over concerns of global fuel glut

Oil prices dropped further by one per cent on Wednesday as a reported US crude stocks surge, rising production in Nigeria and producers’ efforts to cut production levels reignited concerns about a global supply glut.

Bahrain continues to suppress freedom of expression: Amnesty International

Amnesty International called out Bahrain, which reportedly continues to suppress freedom of expression by jailing social media activists for their tweets.

Human rights activist Nabeel Rajab and opposition leader Fadhel Abbas are two prominent figures currently jailed for their thoughts and tweets in Bahrain.

“In a climate of increasing hostility towards dissent of any kind, Bahrain needs independent voices like Nabeel Rajab and Fadhel Abbas more than ever. They should be applauded and protected, not punished, for their brave efforts to raise human rights concerns,” said Samah Hadid, Deputy Director of Campaigns at Amnesty International’s Beirut regional office.

Mercedes-Benz pick-up trucks coming in 2017

German carmaker Mercedes-Benz announced plans to launch a pick-up truck in 2017, making it the first German premium auto company to enter the lucrative segment in the industry.

The new X-Class marks an addition to the company’s varied model lines and will hit showrooms in Australia, Brazil, Argentina, Africa and Europe late next year.

GM, IBM to combine Watson and OnStar to market brands to drivers

General Motors Co and International Business Machines Corp on Tuesday said they would combine IBM’s artificial intelligence software Watson with the carmaker’s OnStar system in order to market services to drivers in their vehicles, Reuters reported.

The feature, called OnStar Go, is set to debut early next year in more than two million GM vehicles with 4G service, IBM and GM said in a joint statement.