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Malaysia has renewed the visa program for wealthy foreigners

August 17, 2021

4 minutes read

The wealthy foreigner expects a flight to Malaysia at the airport

The issuance of a long-term Malaysian visa was suspended during the pandemic. Now wealthy foreigners can get it again under the My Second Home (MM2H) program. This updated version contains a number of changes, including an increase in the minimum entry amount. In addition, the visa process now focuses on retirees from affluent countries and skilled foreign workers.

Popular investment visa

According to a statement made by Malaysia's Ministry of Home Affairs, the country's Immigration Department will begin processing applications for participants in the updated MMH2 starting in October 2021. According to statistics, the Malaysian national economy received 2,800,000,000 USD of net income from the My Second Home program alone in the period between 2002 and 2019. During this period, 57,478 foreigners and their families managed to benefit from MMH2.

After the coronavirus pandemic, the Malaysian government imposed a cap on the number of visas issued to wealthy foreigners. "The government is well aware of people's concerns about the mass entry of foreign nationals into the country based on the MMH2 program," said Malaysian rulers. The innovation will allow to keep the number of foreigners at no higher than 1% of the entire Asian country's population.

New entry rules

The updated entry rules, in addition to no criminal record and good reputation, require applicants for a visa to stay in the country for 90 days per calendar year. While previously the monthly income of an investor could be 2,362 USD, now it has been increased to 9,500 USD. The minimum amount in a savings account has also grown to 240,000 USD, half of which can be used by a foreigner to purchase real estate or obtain services related to health and education. Previously, the minimum savings figures ranged from 35,436 USD to 70,871 USD, and depended on the age of the applicant.

The government also decided, that visa applicants between the ages of 35 and 49 should add dependents to their principal account balance at a rate of USD 11,812 per person. Applicants will be required to show at least $354,359 in liquid assets. Previously, the value of these assets could range from USD 82,684 to USD 118,120, depending on the age of the applicant.

The amount of administrative fees will also increase. As a down payment, the foreigner will have to provide 118 USD. In addition, they will have to pay a new data processing fee of 1180 USD, with an additional fee of 590 USD for each dependent. Prior to the reform, the full administrative fee was 21 USD.

Immigration opportunities

Long-term visa MMH2 under the new rules must be renewed every 5 years, compared with the previous rules, that obliged foreigners to have their migration status renewed once every 10 years. The secretary of the Malaysian Ministry of Home Affairs, Abdul Rahman Dahlan, noted that the reform of the MMH2 program and an increase in its overall cost is part of the new economic strategy of the country, aimed to restore the positions, lost during the pandemic. Malaysia is currently undergoing a serious political crisis, so the fate of the reformed My Second Home program remains unclear. Migration experts suggest, that if Malaysia's prime minister, Muhyiddin Yassin, leaves, the terms of MMH2 could change again.

Source: Uglobal immigration


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