Over the course of last month, Samsung had been preparing to introduce Samsung Pay service into Russia. The company had partnered with UCS (United Card Services) to make POS systems across the country compatible with Samsung Pay. Samsung Pay has hence started service in Russia from December 1st.
Users holding Visa cards from Alfa Bank, MTS, MTS-Bank, Raiffeisen Bank can add their cards into Samsung Pay and get started with Contactless either via MST which is available on a select number of Samsung smartphones and the Gear S3 or via NFC. VTB 24 bank Visa card users will have to wait for a while before they can use their cards with Samsung Pay.
Samsung aren't the first company to introduce contact less payment in Russia however. Apple's Apple Pay service made entry into the country back in early October in partnership with Sberbank and MasterCard. NFC mode of payment is still a long way to go before being universally accepted, which puts the active usage via this mode of contactless payment at a very small percentage. MST on the other hand makes use of the technology already in the market making it compatible with almost 80% of card payment systems (90% in the USA).