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Numerous Russian banks have said they plan to begin issuing cards using the Chinese UnionPay card operator system, combined with the Mir network from Russia, Reuters reported Sunday (March 6). On Saturday (March 5), Mastercard and Visa — the two largest credit card and digital payment processors — both suspended operations in Russia, forcing Russian banks to consider alternate systems. Tinkoff, Alfa Bank and Sberbank, the biggest lender in Russia, are all looking to switch to the UnionPay system.

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