Moscow - Russia could launch a national card payment system in two to six months after adjusting legislation, the chief executive of Russia's top lender Sberbank told President Vladimir Putin on Monday.

Russian officials said last week they would develop Russia's own credit card system to reduce reliance on Visa and Mastercard after the Western firms placed restrictions on Russian banks in connection with US sanctions over Moscow's annexation of Ukraine's Crimea region.

“We discussed this issue at a meeting with the central bank ... It requires a number of changes in legislative acts which can be corrected quickly enough. And after the adoption of amendments to the law, I think we will need two to six months of technical work to launch ... the national payment system,” German Gref said, according to a Kremlin statement. - Reuters