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Important information related to the situation in Ukraine

The war in Ukraine has grown into a crisis of unprecedented impact on the people of the country and, to a greater or lesser extent, affects us all. In addition to the humanitarian crisis it has triggered, it will have a lasting effect on the global economy. Below we set out a range of issues linked to the events in Ukraine for the information of our private and business clients.

 

Payments from Coop Bank to Ukrainian banks are free of charge.

Opening an account is free of charge for Ukrainian citizens. Those who sign up to our ‘Rahn’ plan will have the monthly fee waived until the end of the year.

Working with our cooperatives, Coop has donated a million euros to Red Cross operations in Ukraine.

Frequently asked questions

As of 19 August 2022 Coop Pank AS will no longer be accepting payments linked to Russia or Belarus. This means that starting from this date it will not be possible in an account opened in Coop Pank AS to receive payments initiated by:

  • Russian and Belarusian banks or other financial institutions or via the subsidiaries of these banks or financial institutions operating in the EU;
  • companies founded outside of Russia or Belarus but of which more than 50% of the owners are from Russia or Belarus; or
  • companies founded in Russia or Belarus via any other bank or financial institution.

As an exception, payments linked to Russia or Belarus will be accepted if they pertain to the national interests of Estonia or humanitarian reasons, such as benefits or pensions. We will also allow our clients, as an exception and for valid reasons, to accept payments related to exiting businesses linked to Russia or Belarus.

Taking cash to Russia or Belarus in amounts exceeding that which is necessary for travelling is prohibited.

Banks are prohibited from accepting deposits of more than €100,000 from Belarusian and Russian citizens and residents. In terms of existing clients, this means that the account balance of such a client in the bank may not exceed €100,000, including that the bank may not pay the client interest on the current account balance if it means that the client’s account balance would exceed €100,000.

This prohibition is not applied to citizens and residents of Russia and Belarus who hold the citizenship of a European Union Member State, a country belonging to the European Economic Area or Switzerland, or who hold a temporary or permanent residence permit in a European Union Member State, a country belonging to the European Economic Area or Switzerland.

Due to international sanctions, payment orders related to Belarusian and Russian transactions must state the exact reason why the payment is made.

Due to international sanctions, payment orders related to Belarusian and Russian transactions must state the exact reason why the payment is made.
In the case of payments for goods and services, the specific goods for which the payment is made must be indicated in the ‘Details’ field in addition to the invoice and contract numbers when the payment order is filled in.

If the payment order does not include the specific details of the goods (e.g. information about the goods in the case of payments related to goods), the bank has the right to reject the transaction!

You can find information on the effective sanctions on Russia and Belarus here: https://vm.ee/et/tegevused-eesmargid/rahvusvahelised-sanktsioonid/kkk-venemaa-ja-valgevene-vastu-kehtestatud-piiravad

According to the effective restrictions , a number of Russian and Belarusian banks have been excluded from the international SWIFT system and concluding transactions with them in any currency is now prohibited. This means that transactions with these banks are prohibited. This restriction extends to the subsidiaries of these banks.

Any transaction with Russia or Belarus may be delayed or rejected due to further checks, and there is also a risk that the other party’s bank or correspondent bank will suspend the transaction for investigation.

Mastercard suspended its operations in Russia on 10 March, as a result of which Coop Pank cards can no longer be used for transactions in Russia. Coop Pank cards can be used for all outside Russia transactions as usual.

Ukrainian citizens can open an account free of charge and no administration fee is charged on the account either. Furthermore, those who sign up to our Rahn Plan will have the monthly fee waived until the end of the year.

A Ukrainian citizen wishing to open an account must present one of the following documents:

  • Ukrainian internal passport, ID card, driving licence with a printout of the temporary protection decision, or
  • Ukrainian foreign travel passport (travel document), or
  • Estonian residence permit card.

TTo open an account just visit our nearest bank branch.

If a Ukrainian citizen starts a new company in Estonia (from 24 February 2022) and wants to open an account in Coop Pank, the account opening fee will be waived. Other services will be charged according to the ordinary price list, and whether we agree to open the account depends on the bank’s risk appetite.

Yes. Estonian banks and ATMs are operating as normal and there has been no increase in demand for cash. Should the desire to withdraw cash increase, banks will be able to meet this demand in cooperation with the Bank of Estonia.

Private and company deposits in Estonian banks are guaranteed up to the value of €100,000 per depositor per bank via the Guarantee Fund.

For example, if someone deposits €1 million in a bank operating in Estonia and another million in another bank operating in the country, the amount they are guaranteed is €200,000.

Estonian banks and bank services are functioning as normal, and the availability of cash is ensured. That said, everyone should have a small amount of cash to hand at any given time. A sensible amount would be enough to cover ordinary needs for a few days. We don’t recommend holding on to larger amounts of money in cash. The money that clients and companies hold in bank accounts is guaranteed, and there are specific plans in place in local banks to ensure their continued operation and the availability of money in various crisis scenarios. We also recommend familiarising yourself with the state’s guidelines on the website www.kriis.ee

An overview of sanctions can be found on the Financial Intelligence Unit website at https://fiu.ee/rahvusvahelised-sanktsioonid/rahvusvahelised-finantssanktsioonid

An overview of EU sanctions is available at https://www.sanctionsmap.eu/#/main

The Ministry of Foreign Affairs has a page on sanctions at https://vm.ee/et/sanktsioonid-mis-kehtestatud-seoses-venemaa-agressiooniga-ukrainas

For an overview of the sanctions implemented against Belarus, see https://www.fiu.ee/rahvusvahelised-sanktsioonid/rahvusvahelised-finantssanktsioonid#muudatused-valgevene

See also the Estonian Refugee Council website at https://www.pagulasabi.ee/en

Banks keep a constant and very close watch on economic, geopolitical and security developments in the countries they operate in. For banks here in Estonia that now involves keeping an even closer eye on things, but nothing all that different to our everyday work has arisen so far.

Take a look at this press release issued by the Bank of Estonia: ‘How does the war in Ukraine affect banking in Estonia?’

Given the ongoing situation, we call on everyone to apply critical thinking to information they read online and to put their trust in reliable sources. Remember that scammers make the most of any situation – they play on people’s emotions to get them to make rash decisions and cheat them out of money. They might play up the risk of a cyberattack to scare you, or exploit your good side by pretending to represent a charity. Be on your guard, and think critically! More information about how to recognise scams can be found on the website of the Banking Association.

People in Estonia are highly motivated to help Ukraine. You can support Ukrainians by donating time, money or much-needed items.

The kriis.ee website provides reliable information on ways you can be of help in the ongoing situation.

We urge all of our clients to be on their guard about the information they take in and to place their trust in reliable sources so as to avoid falling victim to scams. When you make a payment, check who the account holder is and whether your help will actually reach the people who need it.