KUALA LUMPUR, Dec 2 — International students who graduated from universities in Malaysia will have to pay RM450 if they want to apply for a special pass that would allow them to legally remain here for one year for purposes such as travelling or working part-time, the Immigration Department of Malaysia has said.
In a set of 14 frequently-asked-questions (FAQs) on the recently-announced pass, the Immigration Department said the social visit pass for graduates will allow them to stay in Malaysia for domestic travel, finding or getting to know or joining programmes at local institutes of education to further their studies and work part-time in sectors allowed by the law.
Those who are eligible to apply for this pass are international students who are citizens of 23 countries and who have completed their bachelor's degree studies or post-graduate studies at any institution of higher learning in Malaysia.
The 23 countries are Australia, New Zealand, Brunei, Singapore, South Korea, Japan, Germany, United Kingdom, France, Canada, Switzerland, the Netherlands, Saudi Arabia, Kuwait, UAE, Qatar, Oman, Bahrain, Sweden, Norway, Denmark, Finland, and the US. This list of countries was dubbed as low-risk and high-income nations by the home minister.
There is no age limit for those seeking to apply for this pass.
But there are five conditions that international students must fulfill to apply for this social visit pass for graduates, including having completed their studies here as proven by a letter of confirmation of completion of studies as issued by the institution of higher learning.
They are also required to have a valid student pass at the time they applied for this one-year pass, and have a passport that is still valid for at least 18 months, have a health insurance policy that is still active for 12 months.
They also have to present a "personal bond" with a Malaysian sponsor who has an income of at least RM1,500, the Immigration Department said.
According to the FAQs, each applicant will have to pay RM450 for the one-year pass, and will have to pay an additional RM450 for a social visit pass for each dependent.
Among the benefits of this one-year pass is that these international graduates would be able to have their existing dependents with them in Malaysia, and would also have multiple entry visa that allows for entry and exit of the country.
Those who have obtained this one-year social visit pass for graduates are not eligible to apply for resident pass and entry permits, and can change to other long-term visit passes subject to conditions that are in force.
The Immigration Department said the one-year pass cannot be extended upon expiry.
To apply for this one-year pass, these international graduates can do so by completing the IMM.5 form and checklist of documents that can be downloaded from the Immigration Department's website.
They would then have to submit the completed application to the student pass unit at the Immigration Department's headquarters in Putrajaya.
This special one-year pass is one of five initiatives under the Malaysian government's new visa liberalisation policy.
According to the Immigration Department, this one-year pass offer will be available during the December 1, 2023 to December 31, 2026 period.
Malaysia’s visa liberalisation plan comes ahead of the Visit Malaysia Year in 2026, where the country is targeting 26.1 million foreign tourist arrivals and an estimated domestic spending of RM97.6 billion.
Of the 23 countries whose citizens could benefit from the one-year pass, four of them were among the top 10 countries contributing to Malaysia's 26.1 million tourist arrivals in 2019 (Singapore, Brunei, South Korea and Japan), Tourism Malaysia's figures show.
Out of the RM86.1 billion tourist receipts recorded by Malaysia in 2019, 21 in the 23 countries collectively contributed more than RM38.5 billion or nearly 45 per cent, based on calculations using Tourism Malaysia's figures.