Malaysia: Team Member Nationality Requirements

Private companies in Malaysia require a minimum of one director, who must reside in Malaysia but need not be a Malaysian citizen. Public companies require two directors, who need not be Malaysian citizens. There are very few restrictions on foreigners starting businesses in Malaysia. (Source).

Malaysia has liberalized its services sector and encourage foreign participation in a number of industries, including

  • Computer and Related Services
  • Telecommunications
  • Health and Social Services
  • Transport Services
  • Tourism
  • Sports
  • Business Services
  • Professional Services
  • Retail/Leasing
  • Transportation
  • Education (Source).

Foreigners will need a work visa to work in Malaysia. Working without a visa is illegal and subject to a fine or imprisonment. Applicants for work permit must hold a passport valid for 18 months. Malaysia has an expatriate visa for professionals applying to work in Malaysia. The application requires a letter from your sponsoring company confirming they will pay at least RM8000 ($1800) a month in salaries as well as tax revenues for the employee. You may apply for this visa online. (Source). For those expatriates setting up a company in Malaysia, this is the government site detailing the policies and requirements. You can find a list of immigration passes that might be suitable to your needs under the section “Passes Requirements”. (Source).

For skilled workers hoping to stay in Malaysia Long-Term, a residence pass for Talent (RP-T) permit is offered by the Malaysian Government for skilled foreigners who have 5 years of working experience and has already worked for 3 years in Malaysia, is earning a minimum of RM15,000 (US$ 3500) monthly in Malaysia and has paid tax in Malaysia for two years, and has at least a bachelor’s degree. (Source).


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