The second largest bank in Russia, VTB, has just announced that it is offering free debit cards to children from 6 years old, in a bid to improve financial literacy at a young age.
Launched on the eve of the new Russian school year, this initiative supports the bank’s customers in teaching their children how to minimise risks when using cash.
Svyatoslav Ostrovsky, a member of the VTB Management Board said: "This year, VTB has focused on the development of products and services for children, youth and pensioners. One of the key innovations was the children's card - a convenient tool for parents that allows them to control children's spending and protect the child from the risks of theft or loss of cash. This is especially needed on the eve of the new school year, when students may need funds for daily expenses.”
To ensure maximum safety, VTB’s new debit card is issued as an additional card on the parents' account - meaning spending and card limits can be remotely configured, via the VTB Online mobile application. For children over the age of 14, meanwhile, the product can be ordered as a main card, and linked to a separate personal account.
“As a socially responsible bank, this tool gives us the opportunity to instil the basics of financial literacy in the younger generation, to teach them to manage money resources with the help of modern technologies from childhood,” said Ostrovsky. “It is important that parents can track all the actions on the child's card online and immediately set spending limits when registering it - this will make the spending process transparent and safe, and children will never find themselves without money and will learn how to manage savings.”
VTB sees its new card as a safe alternative to cash for daily expenses for a child.