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Central Bank to Pick Platform for National Payment System by Mid-July

Published: July 9, 2014 (Issue # 1819)



  • Central Bank head Elvira Nabiullina. The bank is yet to choose a company to create the new national payment system.
    Photo: Denis Abramov / Vedomosti

TheCentral Bank has delayed thedecision toselect thecompany that will create Russias new national payment system byabout two weeks, theregulators head, Elvira Nabiullina, said July 1 ata banking conference inSt. Petersburg.

President Vladimir Putin signed alaw onthe creation ofa national payment system inMay after Visa andMasterCard stopped servicing two Russian banks that had been blacklisted bythe U.S. inresponse tothe annexation ofCrimea.

Aworking group has been tasked with choosing thebest option fromtwo potential payment systems theUniversal Electronic Card, or UEC, developed byleading Russian lender Sberbank, or theGolden Crown money transfer system that has more than 40,000 branches inRussia, theCommonwealth ofIndependent States andother countries.

Thedecision was expected onJuly 1, but theworking group now has until mid-July toreach adecision. Nabiullina said that ashortlist ofcandidates already exists, but declined toname any ofthem, PRIME reported.

Sberbank head German Gref said Tuesday that he wants his organization todevelop theUEC system even if it is overlooked as theplatform forthe national payment system, Gazeta.ru reported.

Anew type ofelectronic chip has already been developed forthe UEC, but it will take about 18 months toreach full scale production, Kommersant reported inJune.

Explaining Sberbanks interest inthe project, Gref said that thebanks main competitors inthe coming years were likely tobe online payment systems such as Yandex.Money, Qiwi andWebMoney, which are providing stiff competition fortraditional banks.





 


ALL ABOUT TOWN

Saturday, Aug. 30


Break out the tweed and channel your inner Englishman during the English Hunt Picnic this afternoon organized by the Bagmut stables from Krasny Bor in the Leningrad Oblast. Equestrian stunts, English archery and classic hunting fashion will all be available to visitors hoping to live like the characters in Downton Abbey if only for a day. Tickets for the event cost 7,900 rubles ($219.40).


Bookworms will have their chance to swap out well-read classics for something new for their bookshelves at Knigovorot, a free book exchange that will be held in the Yusupov Garden on Sadovaya Ulitsa today. Come for the chance to get a new book or take the opportunity to discuss the literary merits of your favorite authors with fellow fans.



Sunday, Aug. 31


The Neva Delta International Blues Festival wraps up this afternoon on Vasilevsky Island with a concert featuring not only some of Russias best blues bands but international stars as well. Admission is free for all three days of the festival, which begins on Aug. 29, and the shows starting at 5 p.m. each day.



Monday, Sept. 1


Today marks the beginning of Lermontov-Fest, a fall festival celebrating the life of one of Russias most remarkable poets who, in a fate eerily similar to Pushkins, was killed in a duel at the age of 26. Organized by the Lermontov Library System, the next several months will see art exhibitions, concerts and public lectures focusing on the Lermontovs short yet prolific career. Check the Lermontov Library Systems website for more details.



Tuesday, Sept. 2


Join expats and practice your Russian during the Russian Clubs weekly meetings every Tuesday night at 7:30 p.m. The club is free to participate in although you need to be a registered member of Couchsurfing.



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