Paypal Joins Other Payment and Remittance Providers Suspending Services in Russia – As western sanctions over Moscow’s invasion of Ukraine continue to extend, a number of payment and remittance systems, including PayPal, have restricted access to their services in Russia.
In response to Kyiv’s request for assistance, fintech companies have scaled back their operations in the Russian Federation.
Paypal, the world’s largest online payments company, has joined a growing list of fintechs backing Western sanctions against Russia over its invasion of Ukraine. Last Saturday, the firm, which had only offered cross-border transactions to Russians, ceased operations in the Russian Federation.
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According to Reuters, Paypal President and Chief Executive Dan Schulman addressed the move by citing “present circumstances,” saying that the company stands with the international community in condemning Russia’s armed assault against Ukraine. Last week, the platform stopped allowing new Russian users.
Paypal emphasized, however, through a spokesperson, that withdrawals will be enabled for an indeterminate period of time. “Account balances will be disbursed in accordance with applicable laws and regulations,” says the payments behemoth.
Officials in Kyiv have called for the suspension of services in Russia in order to boost Ukraine’s fundraising efforts. Before the weekend, the California-based firm announced that it had “helped raise nearly $150 million for organizations supporting response operations.” Millions of dollars have been donated in cryptocurrency to the Ukrainian government and local NGOs.
Paypal Joins Other Payment and Remittance Providers Suspending Services in Russia – Paypal’s action follows the suspension of certain services in Russia by other payment and remittance providers by the end of February. Wise, which processed cross-border payments for Russian consumers, and Remitly, which enabled money transfers, are two examples.
Wise, a UK-based fintech, imposed a £200 ($265) daily limit on transfers to the Russian Federation at first, but later suspended all money transfers as the US and its European allies imposed more restrictions on the country’s financial system, along with the expulsion of some Russian banks from the SWIFT interbank payment system.
Remitly likewise stopped supporting money transfers to Russian recipients as a result of the tougher restrictions. Other remittance service providers, such as Transfergo and Zepz, have implemented similar measures.
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Revolut, a U.K.-based fintech firm, has reportedly banned payments to Russia and its partner Belarus, according to crypto media sources, while a notice on its website indicates that the fintech firm is doing everything it can to ensure its users may send money to Ukraine.
Nik Storonsky, the company’s CEO, highlighted both his Russian and Ukrainian roots in a blog post, and expressed opposition to the war.