Getting Foreign Employees In Russia Paid During Sanctions

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Not all banks are sanctioned and there remain mechanisms to get foreign staff remunerated while remaining in compliance

The exclusion of Russia from the global SWIFT banking network, coupled with the withdrawal of the largest credit and debit card providers, and the sanctioning of numerous Russian banks has made the process of making payments to Russia difficult. This of course impacts foreign staff remaining in Russia as well as making it hard to send money to relatives in the country.

Foreign employees working in Russia need to access rubles, which means having a local debit card, and having the ability to have that topped up from payments made overseas as part of their salary and other living costs and expenses. While most major banks have now joined the sanctions lists imposed by the EU and US, not all banks are affected. While this may mean that a change of banks is required, it does mean that payments can be made from overseas to reach the required staff member. This may differ dependent upon the employee’s location and typically requires individual attention depending upon circumstances.

Dezan Shira & Associates have a presence in Russia and are familiar with the processes. Our firm, which has 28 offices throughout Asia, also has a payroll services division that can assist. Please contact us at for assistance if needed.

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Russia Briefing is written and produced by Dezan Shira & Associates. During these uncertain times and sanctions imposition, our firm assists Russian companies relocate to Asia, and provides financial and sanctions compliance services to foreign companies operating in Russia. We also provide market research and advisory services to foreign exporters interested in Russia as the economy looks to replace Western sourced products. Please contact us at or visit us at