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SABAH INVESTMENT INCENTIVES & POLICIES  
Immigration  
Function of Immigration

Department of Malaysia

The Immigration Department carries out the normal functions of regulating and overseeing the coming and going of people of all nationalities, including Malaysians, into and out of the designated immigration checkpoints in the country. The Department derives its powers to do so from the Immigration Act 11959/63 and regulations made thereunder. In addition the Department also administers the provisions of the Passport Act, 1966.
Broadly speaking, the department functions as follows:
1. To issue Passport or other travel documents to Malaysian citizens and permanent residents.
2. To enforce all provisions of the Passport Act 1966, Immigration Act 1959/63 and Immigration regulations 1963.
3. To issue Entry Permits to foreign nationals.
4. To issue Certificate of Status to whoever is qualified as a citizen.
5. To regulate the entry and exit of persons through gazetted check points.

Time Required for the Issuance of Various Immigration Document.
Type of Immigration Document

New

Extension

International Passport

7 days

1 day

Restricted Passport

1 day

1 day

Group Travel Document in lieu of Passport

7 days

-

Restricted Travel Document

1 day

1 day

Malaysia/Thailand Border Pass

1 day

-

Malaysia/Indonesia Border Crossing Pass

1 day

-

Certificate of Identity

14 days

2 day

Restricted Certificate of Identity

1 day

1 day

Emergency Certificate

1 day

1 day

Visit Pass - Temporary Employment

1 month

1 month

Visit Pass - Professional

1 month

1 month

Visit Pass - Social/Business

-

1 day

Visit Pass - Foreign wife to Malaysia citizen

1 month

1 day

Employment Pass

3 months

3 months

Dependant Pass

1 month

1 month

Student Pass

7 day

7 days

Re-entry Visa

1 day

-

Re-entry Permit

2 days

-


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Policies on Employment of Expatriate Personnel
All institutions established and registered in Malaysia, especially business entities which employ foreign workers are allowed to bring the required personnel in areas where there is a shortage of trained Malaysian to do the job, subject to certain conditions.

The required expatriate personnel are allowed to hold two types of post:

Key posts are allowed to be held indefinitely by expatriates to safeguard their interest. The post may be filled by the investor himself or any person appointed to represent the interest of the investor.

Such posts are those for executive level requiring professional qualification and practical experience and posts for non-executive level requiring special technical skill and experience. However, these posts are to be filled by suitably qualified Malaysians as soon as they become available. It is the policy of the Malaysian Government to see that Malaysians are trained and employed at all levels of employment. To this end the Government has a policy which requires a local understudy to be attached to each post held by an expatriate personnel. This is to ensure a smooth transfer of technical know-how and experience and to facilitate the eventual take-over of important posts by local personnel.

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Conditions for Entry to Malaysia
Visa Requirement

Foreign nationals who require a Visa to enter Malaysia must first apply and obtain a Visa in advance at the Malaysia Representative Office before entering the country.

Arrival/Departure Card

A visitor is required to complete the Arrival/ Department Card (IMM.26) upon arrival at the gazetted entry points. This card is obtainable at any entry point, Malaysian Representative Offices overseas or travel agencies. A visitor must present his/her passport together with the duly completed arrival/departure card to the Immigration Officer on duty and he/she must ensure that the passport or travel document is endorsed with the appropriate pass before leaving the Immigration counter.

Passport or Travel Documents

A person must possess a valid Passport or Travel Document which is recognised by the Malaysian Government. Any person not in possession of a Passport or Travel Document which is not recognised by the Malaysian Government, must obtain a Document in lieu of Passport (DSGP). Application for the DSGP can be made from any Malaysian Representative Office overseas.

Holders of Travel Documents like Certificate of Identity, Laisser Passer, Tertres de Voyage and a Country's Certificate of Permanent Residence must ensure that their return to the country which issued the Travel Document is guaranteed. Such document shall be valid NOT more than six (6) months from the date of entry into Malaysia.

In Possession of Travel Ticket and Sufficient Funds

A visitor is also required to present proof of his financial ability to finance his/her stay in Malaysia together with a confirmed return ticket to other destinations.

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Permission to Enter
Citizens and holders of documents as stated below are required to obtain a Visa for entry into Malaysia for whatever purpose and duration of stay:

Citizens of Bangladesh, Bhutan, Cuba, India, North Korea, Myanmar, Nepal, Pakistan, People's Republic of China, Sri Lanka, Taiwan and Vietnam.

Holder of document Laisser Passer, Certificate of Identity, United States Re-Entry Permit and Tetres de Voyage.

Citizens from countries with Partial Visa Abolition Agreement with the Government of Malaysia except Albania, Argentina and Turkmenistan, will be required to obtain a Visa for social and business visit exceeding a period of three (3) months.

For those who wish to enter Malaysia for purposes other than for Social and Business Visit, a visa is required for any duration of stay (except for the citizens of the United States who enter for the purpose of studying).

Citizens of ASEAN countries from Indonesia, Philippines and Thailand (except Singapore and Brunei citizens) have to obtain a Visa for the purpose of social and business visits exceeding one (1) month. Those who wish to enter Malaysia for other purposes, a Visa is required for any duration of stay. However, Singapore and Brunei citizens do not require a Visa for any purpose or duration of stay.

Citizens from West Asia countries are required to obtain a Visa for entry into Malaysia for social and business visits exceeding three (3) months. For those who wish to enter Malaysia for other purposes, a Visa is required for any duration of stay.

Citizens from Afghanistan, Iran, Iraq, Libya and Syria need to obtain a Visa for social and business visits exceeding 14 days. For those who wish to enter Malaysia for other purposes, a Visa is required for any duration of stay.

Citizens from Eastern European countries, Baltic and Commonwealth of Independent States (C.I.S) need to obtain a Visa for social and business visit exceeding seven (7) days. For those who wish to enter Malaysia for other purposes, a Visa is required for any duration of stay.

Citizens not classified in the countries stated above need not obtain a visa for a social and business visit not exceeding one (1) month. A visa is required for those who wish to enter and stay more than one (1) month on social and business visit and also for any other purpose and length of stay.

Citizens from Commonwealth countries (except Bangladesh, India, Pakistan and Sri Lanka) DO NOT REQUIRE a Visa. Countries under British protectorate or citizens of the Republic of Ireland and countries with Total Visa Abolition Agreement with the Government of Malaysia i.e. Switzerland, Netherlands, San Marino, Liechtenstein do not require a Visa to enter Malaysia for any purpose or duration of stay.

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Main Entry Points
Entry by Air
State/Territory

Name of Airport

Kuala Lumpur Sultan Abdul Aziz Shah International Airport,
Kuala Lumpur International Airport, Sepang
Federal Territory Labuan Airport
Sabah Kota Kinabalu International Airport
Sarawak Kuching International Airport
Penang Penang International Airport, Bayan Lepas
Johor Sultan Ismail Airport, Johor Bahru
Kedah Langkawi International Airport

Entry by Land
State Entry Points
Perlis Pedang Besar
Wang Klian
Perak Pengkalan Hulu
Kelantan Rantau Panjang Pengkalan Kubor
Kedah Bukit Kayu Hitam Changloon
Johor Johor Bahru
Sarawak Biawak
Sarikei
Padawan
Tebedu
Bunan Gega
Batu Lintang
Lubok Antu
Bario
Merapok
Sabah Sindumin
Long Pasia
Pensiangan

Entry by Sea
State Entry Point
Perlis Kuala Perlis
Kedah Kuah, Langkawi
Teluk Ewa, Langkawi
Kuala Kedah
Perak Lumut
Teluk Intan
Penang Penang
Butterworth
Selangor Port Kelang
Melaka Pelabuhan Melaka Tanjung Bruas
Terengganu Kuala Terengganu
Kuala Dungun
Kemaman Port
Pahang Kuantan
Tioman Island
Negeri Sembilan Port Dickson
Johor Johor Bahru
Tanjung Puteri
Pasir Gudang
Batu Pahat
Muar
Tanjung Belungkor
Tanjung Pengelih
Mersing
Kukup
Sarawak Kuching
Sibu
Marudi Baram
Bintulu
Limbang
Lawas
Sundar
Punang
Sarikei
Tanjung Mani
Banatang
Sabah Tawau
Semporna
Lahat Datu
Sandakan
Kudat
Kota Kinabalu
Kuala Sipitang
Menumbuk
Federal Territory of Labuan Labuan

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Type of Passes
Visit Pass (Social)
A Visit Pass (Social) is issued for the purpose of touring or visiting relatives.

Application for Visit Pass (Social) for a wife of a Malaysian citizen must be made by the applicant's husband at the nearest Immigration Office.

Application can be made either inside or outside the country. While waiting for approval the applicant may enter the country on Visit Pass (Social) as a visitor. Where visa is required application for a reference visa must be made in advance to the nearest Malaysian Mission/Embassy. Approval for this category of pass is on the year to year basis and after the 5th. year the applicant may apply for an Entry Permit to qualify as a Permanent Resident.

Application of Visit Pass (Social) for family members (wife/husband, children and parents) of Student Pass holders must be submitted by the respective individual before entering the country. Application may be submitted to the nearest Malaysian Mission/Embassy together with the Student Pass application. For countries that have no Malaysian Mission/Embassy the applicant may enter Malaysia directly and obtain a Visit Pass (Social) at the entry point. Application for Visit Pass (Social) for family members of the student must be submitted to the State Immigration office where the educational institution is located within 1 (one) month from the date of entry.

Application of Visit Pass (Social) for spouse and children of a holder of Visit Pass (Temporary Employment), skill/professional and holder of Visit Pass (Professional) must be made through a local sponsor, i.e. the employer of its authorised agent. Application may be made at the nearest Immigration office either together with the application for visit passes (Social/Professional) or after the approval of such passes. Those with visa requirement, application for the visa must be made in advance.

Visit Pass (Business)
A Visit Pass (Business) is issued to the following categories of foreigners:

Owners of companies who intend to enter for the purpose of attending the company meeting and seminar, inspecting the company's account or to ensure the smooth running of the company.

Investors or businessmen who wish to enter for business exploratory purposes.

Representatives of foreign companies for the purpose of introducing their manufactured goods produced in Malaysia, but not for sale or distribution.

Foreigners who own properties in Malaysia, such as plantation, land and real estate who enter for purpose of selling, leasing or developing their properties.

Foreign reporters from mass media agencies entering for the purpose of covering conventions or any events in Malaysia. Foreigners issued with Visit Pass (Business) are not allowed to take up employment in Malaysia.


Employment Pass Employment

Passes may be issued to foreigners who have been given permission to work in Malaysia for a minimum period of 2 years or a maximum period of 5 years subject to renewal. However, an expatriate post must be approved by either the Standing Committee on Malaysia Nation in Commerce and Industry or Action Committee on Investment (by the Malaysian Industrial Development Authority), before a foreigner can be issued with an employment pass.

Dependants of Employment Pass holder, if requested, could be issued with Dependant Pass which allow them to stay with Employment Pass holder with validity not exceeding the validity of the Employment Pass.

Visit Pass - Temporary Employment
Visit Pass (Temporary Employment) may be issued to foreigners who wish to work in Malaysia for a period of not more than 2 years. The foreigners should fall under the category of semi-skilled or unskilled worker.

Based on merit, this pass may also be issued to any expatriate whose services are urgently required even before the designated post are approved by the relevant authority.

Application must be submitted by either the employer or by a private employment agency registered with the Immigration Department to the nearest State Immigration Office.

Application must be made while the worker is outside the country. The worker is only allowed to enter when the pass is approved.

Those who require a visa must apply at the nearest Malaysian Representative/Embassy before entry.

Visit Pass - Professional
Visit Pass (Professional) may be issued to foreigners who enter Malaysia to perform specific task for a specific period of time without filling any former post.

Visit Pass (Professional) may be issued to foreigners who intend to undertake work under the following circumstances:

Giving advice to Government/other institution on certain topics or issues.

Assisting sponsors/employers/buyers to install machines and/or train/demonstrate on the operation and maintenance of the newly installed machines.

Conducting research or studies on certain areas, topics or issues.

Serving voluntary organisations/ Speaking / lecturing at seminars and/or courses. Applications for Visit Passes (Professional) for visitors that fall within this category must be made through a local sponsor at least 14 days prior to their entry into the country.

Application must be made at the Immigration Headquarters or the Sabah or Sarawak Immigration Office.

Those with visa requirement must apply for the visa at the nearest Malaysian Mission/Embassy.

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Dependant Pass
Application must be made through the employer or its authorised agent, or by the Employment Pass holder.

This pass may be applied together with the application for the Employment Pass or after the Employment Pass is approved.


Exemption Pass
pplication must be made by the individual concerned or representative at the Immigration Headquarters before or after entry into Malaysia.

Application must be accompanied by a letter from the Ministry of Foreign Affairs Malaysia, a letter from the Ministry of Defence Malaysia (for army personnel) and a letter from the applicant's Embassy.


Student Pass

Application for Student Pass must be made by the student at the nearest Malaysian Representative/Embassy.

Where there is no Malaysian Representative/Embassy, the student may enter Malaysia directly and obtain a Visit Pass (Social) at the entry points.

The student must submit his/her application to the Immigration Office where the educational institution is located within 1 month from the date of entry.

Pass for Japanese-European Silver-Haired Programme Application for Visit Pass (Social) for pensioners from Japan and Europe must be submitted to the Immigration Headquarters through a local sponsor at least 3 months prior to their entry into the country. Where a visa is required application for such visa must be submitted to the nearest Malaysian Mission/Embassy.

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Malaysian Immigration Attache Offices

IMMIGRATION ATTACHE OFFICE OF MALAYSIA (HONG KONG)
High Commissioner's Office of Malaysia
24th floor, Malaysia Building 47-50,
Gloucester Road, Wanchai, Hong Kong
Tel : 007-852-5-270921

IMMIGRATION ATTACHE OFFICE OF MALAYSIA (INDIA )
Deputy High Commissioner's Office of Malaysia
No. 6, Sriram Nagar, North Street Alwarpet,
Madras, India
TEL : 007-91-44-4343048

IMMIGRATION ATTACHE OFFICE OF MALAYSIA (PEOPLE'S REPUBLIC OF CHINA)
Embassy Office of Malaysia 13 Dongzhimenwai Dajie,
Sanlitun, Chao Yang District, Beijing, China
TEL : 007-861-5326544
Fax : 007-861-5325032

Ramada Pear Hotel 9,
Ming Yue Yi Road Guangzhou
510600, Guangdong, China
TEL : 007-8620-7772988
Fax : 007-8620-7395669

IMMIGRATION ATTACHE OFFICE OF MALAYSIA (SINGAPORE)
High Commissioner's Office of Malaysia
301 Jervois Road, Singapore 1024
TEL : 02-2350111

IMMIGRATION ATTACHE OFFICE OF MALAYSIA (TAIWAN)
Malaysia Freindship and Trade Centre 2nd floor,
San Ho Plastic Building, 102 Tun Hwa North Road,
Taipeh, Taiwan
TEL : 007-886-2-7167075
FAX : 007-886-2-7167490

IMMIGRATION ATTACHE OFFICE OF MALAYSIA (UNITED KINGDOM)
High Commissioner's Office of Malaysia 45,
Belgrave Square London S.W.T 8QT,
United Kingdom
TEL : 007-4471-2358033
FAX : 007-447-12355-161

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All information are compiled by Jesselton Communications Sdn.Bhd. 2000.