Visa and Mastercard are the latest, and two of the most influential, companies to suspend operations in Russia in response to its invasion of Ukraine.
Visa and Mastercard answered calls from President Volodymyr Zelenskiy to suspend their business in Russia, in an effort to make Russia’s invasion as costly to the country as possible. According to The Guardian, both companies are isolating Russia, preventing cards issued in the country from working outside, and vise versa.
“We are compelled to act following Russia’s unprovoked invasion of Ukraine, and the unacceptable events that we have witnessed,” said Alfred Kelly, Visa’s CEO.
“We regret the impact this will have on our valued colleagues, and on the clients, partners, merchants and cardholders we serve in Russia.”
“This war and the ongoing threat to peace and stability demand we respond in line with our values.”
Mastercard echoed those sentiments in their own statement:
“For more than a week, the world has watched the shocking and devastating events resulting from the Russian invasion of Ukraine.
“Our colleagues, our customers and our partners have been affected in ways that most of us could not imagine.
“We don’t take this decision lightly. Mastercard has operated in Russia for more than 25 years.
“We have nearly 200 colleagues there who make this company so critical to many stakeholders.
“As we take these steps, we will continue to focus on their safety and wellbeing, including continuing to provide pay and benefits.”
While the companies are clearly working to isolate Russia, domestic customers will still be able to use their cards in-country, according to The Guardian.