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Kazakh banks also refuse to accept Russian cards using Mir payment system

Thursday, 4 April 2024, 20:25
Kazakh banks also refuse to accept Russian cards using Mir payment system
The Russian Mir card. Photo: RBK

Following the example of Armenia and Kyrgyzstan, the banks of Kazakhstan, a key trade partner of the Kremlin in the post-Soviet territory that is a part of the Collective Security Treaty Organisation (CSTO) and the Eurasian Economic Union (EAEU), are refusing to accept service cards issued by the Russian Mir (Peace) system.

Source: The Moscow Times

Details: Reportedly, the area where the Russian Mir cards are being used keeps narrowing sharply after the US implemented sanctions against the Russian payment system and threatened the banks, which ignore them, with secondary measures.


Kazakhstan’s largest bank, Halyk Bank, has de facto joined the sanctions against the Mir payment system. It completely stopped maintaining Russian cards, including transactions, payments in terminals and withdrawing cash from the ATMs.

A bank representative specified that it had happened in February when US sanctions were imposed against the National Payment Card System (NPCS), a wholly owned subsidiary of the Russian Central Bank, the operator of the Mir payment system.

Russian cards are not accepted by either ForteBank, Nurbank, Freedom Bank or CentreCredit bank. "You should not even try to find the banks (that  accept the Mir system – ed.) in Kazakhstan; these are not our sanctions; the Mir cards are under the sanctions, and Kazakhstan must follow them," CentreCredit explained.

A representative of ForteBank stated that the money transfers cannot be conducted "due to sanctions".

Only VTB Kazakhstan and Bereke Bank (the former Kazakh subsidiary of Russian Sberbank) keep partially working with Russian cards. The former allows withdrawing cash from Mir at ATMs only in the national currency, tenge, and the latter does not allow conducting money transfers.


  • In February 2024, the US imposed sanctions against the National Card Payment System operator.
  • The cards of the Russian Mir payment system had stopped operating in ATMs and POS terminals of most Armenian banks starting 30 March 2024.
  • The banks in Kyrgyzstan will stop accepting cards of the Mir payment system due to US sanctions on 5 April.

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