In the event that a western bank sees in the SWIFT network that a payment has been made by a resident of Crimea or a company registered in the peninsula, it blocks the transfer, Russia’s business daily newspaper Vedomosti reports on Tuesday.
“If a client is registered in Crimea, foreign banks will block the foreign currency payments which are made by the client,” the paper quotes another employee of a Russian payment system as saying. He also adds that similar blocking measures are being applied to companies registered in Crimea.
Russia’s business news agency RBK confirms that such silent rules are actually in place, quoting a source in the Bank of Russia.
The rule so far works only one way: one can easily transfer payments in foreign currencies from Russia to Crimea, but similar payments the other way, from Crimea, will be blocked.
This peculiar feature results from banking regulations which specify that a client making a transfer shall specify the regions of the sender, while there is no rule that the region of the addressee must be specified.