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Hoping to spur global shippers to embrace electronic payments, First Data Corp. today launched PayCargo for the shipping industry. The Web-based freight-payment service uses automated clearinghouse systems, and PayCargo extend a private line of credit for the payments between shippers and carriers, the companies that own the seagoing vessels. Currently, many of these companies use paper invoices and checks. Greenwood Village, Colo.-based First Data says the system also can expedite a payment dispute because shippers and carriers can see the same payment information online without having to wait for invoices to be generated and faxed to the other party. A First Data spokesperson says shippers will have the ability to approve or dispute payments to carriers. Additionally, both parties will be able to see departure and arrival dates, bill due data, the amount due and other relevant information, he says. PayCargo only is available in the United States at this time, the spokesperson says. First Data announced in November the formation of PayCargo LLC, a joint venture company with Coral Gables, Fla.-based Coihue LLC, a company headed by a group of shipping industry executives, First Data says.

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