As the war heats up, international sanctions continue. In response to the invasion of Ukraine, the West imposed sanctions on Russia’s financial institutions.

According to a press release from Russia’s Central Bank, customers of some of its top banks can no longer use Apple Pay or Google Pay with their debit or credit cards. VTB Group, Sovcombank, Novikombank, Promsvyazbank, and Otkritie FC Bank are among the companies affected.

Google and Apple also cut off their payment services in Russia, and a large number of commuters are lining up at Moscow metro stations because they couldn’t pay their fares with Apple Pay and Google Pay.

Apple imposed its own restrictions, suspending sales of popular items such as the iPhone in Russia. Outside of Russia, it also removed some Russian news apps from the App Store and disabled traffic and live incident reports in Apple Maps in Ukraine.

Apple spokesman Fred Sainz said in a statement, “We are deeply concerned about the Russian invasion of Ukraine and stand with all of the people who are suffering as a result of the violence.”

Intel and AMD, two of the world’s leading semiconductor companies, notified their Russian partners that they would stop exporting industrial chips to the nation in response to sanctions.

Intel spokesperson in Russia said, “The company is closely monitoring the situation and is enforcing applicable sanctions and export control rules, including new sanctions imposed by OFAC and rules issued by BIS.”

Taiwan Semiconductor Manufacturing Company (TSMC), the world’s largest chips manufacturer, also halted sales to Russia and third parties known to supply products to Russia.

The Washington Post cited analysts as saying that Russia does not create vast consumer electronics or chips, and it does not produce the high-end semiconductors required for modern computing. Hence, TSMC’s participation in the sanctions is particularly damaging.

It is worth noting that China is Russia’s largest electronics supplier, supplying a third of its semiconductors and more than half of its computers and smartphones.

Officials in the United States expect technology suppliers, such as Chinese companies from Semiconductor Manufacturing International, to follow the new restrictions and limit sales of sensitive technology with American origins, particularly in the defense sector of Russia.

On Monday, Feb. 28, China’s Foreign Ministry once again expressed its opposition to sanctions, saying, “China doesn’t approve of resorting to sanctions to try to resolve problems, even more we oppose illegal, unilateral sanctions without an international mandate.”

Taiwan economic expert Huang Shicong told Xin Tang Ren media, “At present, China is not participating in the sanctions, in fact, to a certain extent, it is actually supporting Russia. Then to the international community, whether China also be included in the next wave of sanctions or sanctions list, I think it is worth observing.”

Su Ziyun, an associate researcher at Taiwan’s National Defense and Security Research Institute, said, “Beijing did not even say a word for Ukraine. This is what makes Ukraine completely dissatisfied, and its attitude towards Beijing is highly suspicious and disappointment.”

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