A number of Russian banks, including Sberbank and Alfa-Bank, have announced the possible issuing Mir-UnionPay co-badged cards, which can be used to pay for purchases and withdraw cash abroad, TASS reports.
Some Russian banks already work with the Chinese UnionPay payment system. These include Rosselkhozbank, Post Bank, Gazprombank, Bank St. Petersburg, Promsvyazbank, VBRR, Primsotsbank, Zenit and Sovcombank.
Chinese UnionPay is an international payment system founded in 2002. The system received international status in 2005. UnionPay can be used to pay in 180 countries around the world, including Switzerland, Greece, Italy, Spain, Germany, Mexico, Cyprus, Thailand, India, Israel, Portugal, Croatia, Poland, Serbia, Hungary, Austria.
The decision comes after Visa and Mastercard simultaneously decided to suspend operations in Russia.
At the same time, Visa and Mastercard cards of all Russian banks will continue to work within the Russian Federation, customer funds on accounts linked to such cards are fully preserved and available. But cross-border card transactions will not be available. This applies both to paying for purchases in foreign online stores and using these cards abroad.
At the same time, Visa and Mastercard cards will continue to work abroad wherever the Mir card is accepted. These are Turkey, the United Arab Emirates, Vietnam, Armenia, Belarus, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Tajikistan.