Electronic transactions are becoming increasingly commonplace in the countries of Latin America and the Caribbean, despite the collapse of many dotcom firms and the failure of e-commerce to make inroads in the region. In the transport sphere, the gradual incorporation of technology in support of processes and the exchange of money flows between players has brought greater versatility, security and flexibility. In public transport, such initiatives take the form of automatic ticket machines and prepaid card dispensing machines. In urban transit, electronic purses used for the supervision and payment of parking time, and in road pricing, electronic toll systems streamline the process of collecting money; this is especially the case with motorways and urban concessions. And in shipping, electronic transfers are increasingly being used for the payment of customs dues and port charges.In view of the importance of the topic and the interest expressed in it, the Transport Unit has begun a study of these issues, and recently published a paper entitled Sistemas de cobro electrónico de pasajes en el transporte público, ("Electronic systems for payment of tickets in public transport") LC/L.1752-P/E, July 2002, on which this issue of the Bulletin is based.