Emirates Airline has begun service at Los Angeles International Airport (LAX), the airline’s third U.S. gateway and latest route to join its global network.

Keith Longstaff, Emirates divisional senior vice president of Commercial Operations, announced the service, along with Los Angeles director of international trade Dario Gomez, Los Angeles Board of Airport Commissioners president Alan Rothenberg and Los Angeles Visitors and Convention Bureau associate vice president of media relations Carole Martinez.

Emirates officials said the new service is expected to have a positive impact on the Los Angeles area, including increased employment opportunities, gross contributions to the local economy and business growth.

“We are confident that Emirates’ operations in Los Angeles will be successful, and we are already seeing strong demand in our forward bookings,” Longstaff said.

Rothenberg added, “The Emirates start-of-service is a great beginning of what will be a new era in LAX’s role as an international gateway. The route opens a new destination for business and leisure travelers in the [Persian] Gulf region, as well as enables travelers to reach every region of the world non-stop from LAX.”

Rothenberg said international trade between the two major air cargo hubs is also expected to expand with the significant cargo capacity available on Emirates’ aircraft used for the route.

Emirates Flight 215 departs Dubai at 8:20 a.m., arriving in Los Angeles at 1:05 p.m. (local times) the same day. The return route, Flight 216, departs Los Angeles at 4 p.m., arriving in Dubai at 7:55 p.m. the following day. The new flight covers 8,339 miles in 16 hours and 45 minutes from Dubai to Los Angeles, while the shorter return flight is less than 16 hours.