Putin criticizes Visa, Mastercard and advocates a Russian payment system

The Russian authorities are not planning to punish international payment systems Visa and MasterCard, but these systems have undermined their credibility, Russian President Vladimir Putin said at the Russian Popular Front media forum in St. Petersburg on Thursday.

The Russian authorities are not planning to punish international payment systems Visa and MasterCard, but these systems have undermined their credibility, Russian President Vladimir Putin said at the Russian Popular Front media forum in St. Petersburg on Thursday.

According to Russian President Vladimir Putin, Visa and Mastercard are taking the Russian payment market for granted and need to be aware that they may lose it. 

Speaking about the payment systems at the ONF media forum, Putin said: “It turns out that they [Visa and Mastercard] are very susceptible to political influence and pressure. From an economic point of view, in my opinion, this is a very big mistake on their part.” 

Putin added that while Visa and Mastercard control 90 percent of the Russian market, they only have this market by default and the situation could change. 

The Russian president encouraged the country to create its own payment system, noting that Japan and China have their own internal payment systems while Russian citizens are using a system created by foreigners.

On Western sanctions

Western sanctions against Russia are not critical in nature, Russian President Vladimir Putin said.

"These [sanctions] are absolutely not critical in nature, but you can't of course say they are a good thing."

The sanctions are primarily political in nature, he said. "We all know full well, in any case those that follow global politics, the economy, that no sanctions are effective in the modern world and they never have a lasting effect. Rather this is all political in nature," Putin said.

"We are members of the World Trade Organization. It has certain rules, and we have the ability to uphold our interests within this organization," he said.

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