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Russia’s new 100 rouble banknote is impossible to withdraw from ATMs after Western firms pulled out

Russia’s new 100-ruble banknotes are impossible to get out of ATMs because the western companies that programmed them have left the country.

The new banknote features the Rzhev Memorial to the Soviet Soldier, a memorial to one of the bloodiest battles of World War II due to the many Soviet casualties.

On the other side of the 100-ruble note – worth about £1.50 – is a photo of the Kremlin, which regularly draws comparisons between World War II and the war in Ukraine in order to fuel patriotism in the country.

Deputy Governor of the Bank of Russia Sergey Belov holds the newly designed 100 ruble Russian banknote.  The Association of Russian Banks has asked for a six-month delay for the introduction of the new 100-ruble banknote, saying it needed a new security feature

Deputy Governor of the Bank of Russia Sergey Belov holds the newly designed 100 ruble Russian banknote. The Association of Russian Banks has asked for a six-month delay for the introduction of the new 100-ruble banknote, saying it needed a new security feature

But the Association of Russian Banks has asked for a six-month delay for the banknote’s introduction, saying it needed a new security feature. The Telegraph

‘With the departure of suppliers, every update of the software of … ATMs, but also cash registers and terminals has become impossible’, newspaper Kommersant quotes the association as saying.

Western ATM maker Diebold Nixdorf and software company NCR Corporation, companies responsible for installing the banking machines and updating their software, are both American multinationals that withdrew from Russia after Vladimir Putin’s invasion of Ukraine on Feb. 24.

The Russian banks are struggling to add the security feature without the cooperation of Western companies, thus stalling the rollout of the new patriotic banknote.

The Rzhev Memorial to the Soviet Soldier, a World War II memorial, is featured on the back of the 100 ruble banknote, with a picture of the Kremlin on the other side

The Rzhev Memorial to the Soviet Soldier, a World War II memorial, is featured on the back of the 100 ruble banknote, with a picture of the Kremlin on the other side

Russians queue at a Sberbank ATM in GUM department store shortly after the February invasion of Ukraine

Russians queue at a Sberbank ATM in GUM department store shortly after the February invasion of Ukraine

The 100-ruble banknote is said to be part of the last edition printed in 2015 and printed a year after Russia’s annexation of Crimea to celebrate the seizure of Ukrainian territory.

Russia is believed to have failed to pay its debts after missing a repayment deadline, following a series of sanctions against the Russian economy.

Russia had last defaulted on its international debt in 1918 during the Bolshevik Revolution more than a century ago, but the country had defaulted on ruble-denominated bonds in 1998 during the Asian financial crisis.

The Kremlin’s efforts to avert its first major default on international bonds this century failed in late May when the US Treasury Department’s Office of Foreign Assets Control (OFAC) effectively blocked Moscow from making payments.

Russia’s central bank assets have also been frozen, preventing the country from using £470 million in foreign exchange reserves.

Western brands have withdrawn from Russia, leaving shopping centers in Moscow and St. Petersburg to become ‘ghost towns’ with empty shopping streets.

Few visitors pass by GUM department store with many boutiques closed due to sanctions in Moscow, Russia, Wednesday, June 1, 2022

Few visitors pass by GUM department store with many boutiques closed due to sanctions in Moscow, Russia, Wednesday, June 1, 2022

A woman sits looking at her smartphone in front of stores that are closed due to sanctions in a shopping center.  Popular clothing brands, both luxurious and affordable, coffee and fast food chains became unavailable to many Russians

A woman sits looking at her smartphone in front of stores that are closed due to sanctions in a shopping center. Popular clothing brands, both luxurious and affordable, coffee and fast food chains became unavailable to many Russians

Luxury brands such as France’s Chanel and Louis Vuitton have announced they are suspending operations in Russia, adding to the country’s economic isolation imposed by the West in response to the invasion.

Spanish fashion retailer Inditex, owner of Zara, stopped trading in Russia in March, closing its 502 stores and stopping online sales.

Companies that have stopped doing business in Russia

  • McDonald’s
  • KFC
  • Taco Bell
  • pizza hut
  • Cocoa-Cola
  • pepsi
  • Starbucks
  • Uniqlo
  • British-American tobacco
  • Ikea
  • H&M
  • Canada goose
  • nest
  • Nike
  • TJ Max
  • BP
  • Exxon Mobil
  • Shell
  • Volvo
  • Siemens
  • Renault
  • caterpillar
  • Delta Airlines
  • United Airlines
  • DHL
  • Hilton Hotels
  • Hyatt Hotels
  • US Airlines
  • Uber
  • Sony
  • Microsoft
  • Apple
  • Netflix
  • Bloomberg
  • Walt Disney
  • Warner Brothers
  • Imperial brands

Prada, Dior, Gucci and Fendi were among those who cleared their shelves in the Russian capital’s luxury shopping centers as sanctions began to bite.

US food and beverage giants, including Coca-Cola, Pepsi and Starbucks, have paused or closed their operations in Russia due to Western sanctions.

Companies from British energy giants Shell and BP to French carmaker Renault have pulled out of Russia and slapped them in the face as they look to sell their holdings there.

Yum Brands, which operates the brands KFC, Pizza Hut, Taco Bell, The Habit Burger Grill and WingStreet worldwide, said it is suspending all investment and development of new restaurants in Russia and will donate all profits from operations in Russia to humanitarian efforts. .

Other major US companies that have recently announced their intention to leave Russia include Nissan, Levi jeans, Visa and Mastercard.

McDonald’s closed all of its 850 restaurants in the country in March — where it says it employs 62,000 people — including its iconic Pushkin Square location, the latest company to shut down operations in Russia amid Western sanctions.

The company said it would try to hire and pay a Russian buyer its employees until the sale is closed. It did not identify a potential buyer. McDonald’s said it plans to remove gold arches and other symbols and signs bearing its name.

As part of the exit, McDonald’s expects to record a non-cash charge of approximately $1.2 billion to $1.4 billion.

“The humanitarian crisis caused by the war in Ukraine and the rapidly unpredictable business environment have led McDonald’s to conclude that the company’s survival in Russia is no longer tenable,” the statement said.

The first McDonald’s in Russia opened in central Moscow more than three decades ago, shortly after the fall of the Berlin Wall.

Estee Lauder and IBM also decided to leave Russia, but large international companies such as Reckitt, Unilever and British American Tobacco will remain.

Estee Lauder and IBM also decided to leave Russia, but major international companies such as Reckitt, Unilever and British American Tobacco remain in place

Other companies have also decided to stay, with some facing backlash.

A woman walks by a nearly empty shopping center where many stores are closed due to sanctions.  Dozens of foreign and international companies have pulled out of the country, leaving half-empty malls and closed doors in places where once buzzed with customers

A woman walks by a nearly empty shopping center where many stores are closed due to sanctions. Dozens of foreign and international companies have pulled out of the country, leaving half-empty malls and closed doors in places where once buzzed with customers

A food delivery man rides a bicycle past the GUM department store with a Cartier boutique closed due to sanctions in Moscow.  Prada, Dior, Louis Vuitton, Gucci and Fendi were among those to clear their shelves in the luxury shopping centers of the Russian capital

A food delivery man rides a bicycle past the GUM department store with a Cartier boutique closed due to sanctions in Moscow. Prada, Dior, Louis Vuitton, Gucci and Fendi were among those to clear their shelves in the luxury shopping centers of the Russian capital

HSBC has a small presence in Russia with “no plans at the moment to change anything”, while pharmaceutical company AstraZeneca said its role in helping medics deliver essential care was “more urgent than ever”. Rival GSK said it will stay as well.

Japanese fashion retailer Uniqlo will remain in Russia because its boss believes “clothing is a necessity of life,” while Stella Artois owner AB InBev said it will continue to operate through a local subsidiary.

And earlier in the year, French automaker Renault announced it had transferred its Russian assets to the Moscow government, marking the first major nationalization of economic unbundling.

Russian authorities said they were ready to nationalize foreign assets – as happened with Renault – and some officials assured Russians that their favorite brands would have domestic alternatives.

Moscow officials have tried to downplay the severity of Western sanctions, promising that Russia will adapt and take steps to halt the flight of foreign exchange and capital.

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