Building a resilient payment ecosystem to withstand the crisis

May 13, 2024 | By Anna Onyshchenko
For more than 25 years, Mastercard has been at the helm of powering an inclusive digital economy in Ukraine in close collaboration with the National Bank of Ukraine (NBU), various government stakeholders, partner banks and merchants. These long-term efforts of all market players have become key to the resilience of the country’s financial sector during the Russian invasion.

The full-scale war has brought many challenges for Ukraine’s payment infrastructure. During the first weeks of the offensive, when ATM capabilities were limited, our ‘purchase with cash withdrawal’ service became an alternative to ATMs, allowing Ukrainians to withdraw cash from their card account when paying for purchases with a card at retail outlets. We have tripled the service acceptance network, and its usage has increased significantly, showcasing one of the most striking examples of how pre-war financial products and services have gained critical importance in today’s context.

Moreover, we partnered with PayPal to facilitate cross-border money transfers. This enabled Ukrainian PayPal account holders to send and receive money as well as transfer funds from their PayPal wallets to cards issued by Ukrainian banks. In addition, we collaborated with international non-governmental organizations to provide technological rails for convenient disbursements, and supported our partner banks in the country in implementing cloud edge connectivity solutions to strengthen the resilience of their infrastructure.

Over the years, we have launched various projects and initiatives aimed at driving financial inclusion in Ukraine, and we are committed to continuing these efforts. These include the implementation of remote identification and card issuance practices based on our Digital First program, expansion of cashless payment infrastructure, introduction of digital payment methods, such as Apple Pay and Google Pay, and educational campaigns. Furthermore, we have launched several banking products tailored to children and teenagers that not only address the financial needs of the young generation but also foster responsible financial habits from an early age.

Bringing SMEs into the financial system is also an important focus for us. We have been introducing specialized financial products, solutions and initiatives aimed at helping Ukrainian entrepreneurs grow their businesses. We have been a longstanding partner of the Ministry of Digital Transformation in developing the Diia.Business online portal as well as offline entrepreneur support centers. In addition, we are working with our partner banks to contribute to the e-Entrepreneur project and provide financial, advisory and educational assistance to the country’s SMEs.

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Anna Onyshchenko, Vice President, Head of Sales Account Management, Mastercard EEMEA, Mastercard

About Mastercard (NYSE: MA)

Mastercard is a global technology company in the payments industry. Our mission is to connect and power an inclusive, digital economy that benefits everyone, everywhere by making transactions safe, simple, smart and accessible. Using secure data and networks, partnerships and passion, our innovations and solutions help individuals, financial institutions, governments and businesses realize their greatest potential. Our decency quotient, or DQ, drives our culture and everything we do inside and outside of our company. With connections across more than 210 countries and territories, we are building a sustainable world that unlocks priceless possibilities for all.

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