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Spotify drops paying subscribers in Russia

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Music streaming giant Spotify said Thursday its paid subscription service would no longer be available in Russia, as sanctions had made processing payments in the country impossible.

“Due to new restrictions introduced by major payment providers, payment processing is not currently possible for the majority of Premium users in Russia,” a Spotify spokesman told AFP.

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Paid premium accounts “will be cancelled if a recurring payment fails and the account will then be automatically moved to our free service,” he said in a written statement.

The company said it had also “paused all advertising campaigns running in Russia.”

Spotify did not immediately confirm to AFP how many subscribers it expected lose in Russia.

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Spotify’s free service would however remain available in Russia “to allow for the global flow of information,” it said, adding that “arts and news are a powerful force for good.”

The Swedish company, which is listed on the New York stock exchange, already announced last week that it was closing its offices in Russia and removing Russian state-sponsored content, such as news outlets RT and Sputnik, from its service.

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