Ukrainian digital activist accuses PayPal of being “under toxic Russian influence”

Ukrainian digital activists have failed to persuade PayPal to make its service fully available to Ukrainian users, the local tech blog AIN.UA reported last week.

Following a meeting earlier this month with PayPal executives in Warsaw, one of these activists, Ilia Kenigshtein, has expressed his bitter disappointment over the US company’s lack of interest in the Ukrainian market.

Not only did the PayPal representatives fail to prepare themselves seriously to the meeting, according to Kenigshtein, but they might have fallen “under the toxic influence of Russia’s anti-Ukrainian propaganda,” Kenigshtein wrote on his Facebook page.

Currently, Ukrainians can make payments through PayPal using their credit cards issued in Ukraine, but can’t receive payments through the system — even though Ukraine’s central bank lifted the legal obstacles to such transactions last month.

“We want PayPal, we want to be part of Europe”

A figure of the Ukrainian startup scene, Kenigshtein is one of the activists behind a lobbying campaign which began more than a year ago.

Thus more than 18,000 people signed an online petition on Another initiative on Facebook, christened ‘PayPal for Ukraine Initiative,’ has attracted more than 22,000 ‘likes,’ including those from leading figures of the Ukrainian high-tech scene.

Now resigned economy minister Aivaras Abromavicius added some pressure in a public statement: “We want Ikea in Ukraine, we want H&M, we want PayPal, we want to be part of Europe,” he said last year.

Topics: International, News, Payments & fintech
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