I am very knowledgeable on the S.W.I.F.T. financial system. I worked in the international department of a major U.S. bank for nearly 15 years, using the SWIFT system daily……..pretty much all day long.
Expelling Russian banks from the SWIFT system could/would have a huge impact on Russia’s ability to conduct business, government and private. However, expelling some banks………does not cut it. All Russian banks with SWIFT access need to be expelled. Russia can dance around the banks expelled……use ones that have not been. Too, Russia could use other foreign banks in China who are sympathetic to them; while some banks in Russia still have SWIFT access. Those Russian banks still with access can merely send messages/transactions to China and ask them to forward to their desired bank (foreign banks) destinations. Yes it complicates Russia’s ability to communicate with foreign banks, but to be really effective ………ALL THE RUSSIAN BANKS SHOULD BE EXPELLED (at least until Putin withdrawals from the Ukraine).
One thing I want to make clear……….small branch banks in Russia do not have SWIFT access (which is the same here in the U.S.). Normally only the international departments of the bigger banks have access to SWIFT. International departments that conduct the import/export business of companies/corporations etc.