Apple Pay suspended in Russia with banks hit by sanctions

By | February 25, 2022


Following Russia’s invasion of Ukraine, the US government and the European Union imposed economic sanctions on the country – which include restricting foreign transactions to Russian banks. As a result, Apple Pay, Google Pay, and other digital wallets have been suspended in Russia.

As informed by the Central Bank of Russia on Friday (via Business Insider), five major Russian banks have had their international operations restricted due to sanctions from other countries. Customers of these banks will no longer be able to use their cards abroad, or even make online payments to companies registered in countries that have issued sanctions.

The statement says that the affected banks are: VTB Group, Sovcombank, Novikombank, Promsvyazbank, and Otkritie. The Central Bank of Russia also notes that cards issued by these five banks no longer work with Apple Pay or Google Pay, as both platforms are US-based.

It’s worth noting that Russian customers will still be able to make contactless payments using their physical cards within Russia, but as of now Apple and Google digital wallets have been suspended in the country indefinitely.

The sanctions were announced after Russian President Vladmir Putin ordered the invasion of Ukraine on Thursday, which started a war in the region. In addition to the United States and the European Union, the United Kingdom, Japan, and Australia have also imposed economic sanctions on Russia.

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