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Electronic Arts stops sales in Russia, bans Russian teams from esports events

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EA will no longer offer games, content, or virtual currency bundles in Russia or Belarus

The silhouettes of attendees are seen standing in front of an Electronic Arts Inc. (EA) logo Photo: Bloomberg via Getty Images

Electronic Arts has joined the chorus of companies that will temporarily stop business in Russia after its invasion of Ukraine. EA will no longer sell content, games, or virtual currency in Russia or Belarus while the conflict continues, the publisher announced on Friday.

“We have made the decision to stop sales of our games and content, including virtual currency bundles, in Russia and Belarus while this conflict continues,” EA said in a statement. “As a result, our games and content will no longer be available for purchase in our Russian region storefront on Origin or the EA app, including through in-game stores. We are also working with our platform partners to remove our titles from their stores and stop the sale of new in-game content in the region.”

This is not the first action that EA has taken around Russia in recent weeks. The company also removed Russian teams from its sports video games FIFA 22 and NHL 22.

Electronic Arts also says it is currently trying to understand how best to help the region, particularly its colleagues and partners who remain there.

On Wednesday, Ukraine’s deputy prime minister Mykhailo Fedorov urged gaming companies like Microsoft and PlayStation to pull out of the Russian market and to support the people of Ukraine. Along with EA, several other companies, including Microsoft, CD Projekt Group, and Bloober Team, have announced that they will no longer be selling in Russia.

Russia’s invasion of Ukraine began in late February when Russia launched an unprovoked attack on the country. Since the fighting began, there have been thousands of casualties, including many civilians, and nearly a million civilians have fled the country. The attack has resulted in sanctions against Russia from many countries around the world. Major companies like Shell, BP, and Apple have also stopped operating in the country along with entertainment companies like Disney, Warner Bros., and Paramount.

Update (March 16): Electronic Arts has now also banned teams from both Russia and Belarus from competing in its official esports events, the company announced on Wednesday. This decision impacts both the Apex Legends Global Series and the EA Sports FIFA 22 Global Series.

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