U.S. Sanctions Push Russia Toward Creating Competitor To Visa And MasterCard

What's Next In Payments®
1:01 PM EDT March 27th, 2014

In the wake of U.S. sanctions in response to Russia’s annexation of Crimea, Russian President Vladimir Putin has called for the creation of the country’s own payment system to rival Visa and MasterCard.

Both American credit card companies stopped processing transactions for customers of Bank Rossiya last week after the state department placed Russia on its sanctions list.  Also cut off were customers of SMP Bank as its owners – Arkady and Boris Rotenberg.

“It is really too bad that certain companies have decided on … restrictions. … I think it will simply lead to a loss of certain segments of the market for them, and a rather profitable market at that,” Putin said in a meeting with Russian lawmakers, reports Finextra.

Putin further noted that, given Japan and China’s successes with payment card systems, it seems only natural that Russia should extend itself into the market.

Putin’s declaration follows an earlier suggestion by Sberbank that its Pro 100 system could serve as a replacement for Visa and MasterCard.

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