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Russia’s CBR offers to slash Visa, MasterCard security deposits

June 09, 2014, 18:17 UTC+3 MOSCOW
International payment systems Visa and MasterCard agreed to transfer processing of Russian operations to Russia
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© ITAR-TASS / Evgeni Kurskov

MOSCOW, June 9. /ITAR-TASS/. The Russian Central Bank (CBR) has offered the government to reduce the security deposits that international payment systems Visa and MasterCard need to pay to continue their operations in the country to about $20-30 million quarterly from the initial $200-300 million, Deputy Chairwoman Tatyana Chugunova said.

In May, Visa and MasterCard wanted to quit Russia after the government decided to create a national payment system and ordered them to deposit hundreds of millions of dollars with the central bank to continue operations. But the international operators changed their minds after a meeting with Deputy Prime Minister Igor Shuvalov and Finance Minister Anton Siluanov. They also agreed to transfer processing of Russian operations to Russia.

“The Duma is now considering a bill reducing the deposits. It gives the government a right to establish details of the deposits and penalties for their non-payment, after consulting with the central bank. It will be a government order,” she said.

Vedomosti reported last week that the systems are holding talks with the country’s own payment platforms and processing companies. Both systems are saying that it is either unprofitable for them to organize their own processing in Russia or contradicts their internal regulations, the sources cited by the newspaper said.

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