Ethiopian Airlines has announced it will launch direct flights to Chicago.
The only direct service linking Africa with Chicago takes off in June, operated on Boeing 787 Dreamliners.
It is 'filling a critical air connectivity vacuum' linking Ethiopian's Addis Ababa hub with Chicago, the airline said.
"Chicago will be our fourth destination in the US and our seventh in the Americas. It is the third biggest city in the US and one of the most important global aviation hubs.
It is important as a main hub for Ethiopian's Star Alliance partner United Airlines.
The service will be operated together with United to enable travelers from across the US to connect to 55 destinations in Africa.
The airline also touts an expected increase in trade, investment and tourism to Africa.
Chicago city officials say about 50 Chicago-area companies already have operations in 10 African countries.
The route will 'unlock new opportunities for the city of Chicago and travelers across the globe,' said Chicago aviation commissioner Ginger Evans.
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