Malaysia is the biggest country in South East Asia’s and it also has one of the most bustling economies in Asia itself. As such, many foreign investors see Malaysia as an iconic landscape to set up their company. In such a favorable condition, business visa in Malaysia is demanded foreign investors to set their business here.
In fact, with Malaysia’s ease of doing business rank at number 15 on a global scale, this country is an ideal place for company incorporation. Additionally, Malaysia has a Human Development Index of 0.802- revealing it to have a high standard of living.
This could stem from the country’s GDP being at an all-time high with a value of $354.348 billion. This also reflects the country’s low rate of unemployment, which is 3.4% of the total population.
When the condition is such promising, investors tend to gather into this nation to do businesses. Here we will see how to get a business visa in Malaysia to carry out business here.
Types of visas in Malaysia
However, in order to conduct business in Malaysia you will need a proper business visa for you to do so as a foreign national. There are a few visa types you can choose from. This is as some visas are more appropriate towards different types of legal structures than others
Single Entry Visa
This visa can be applied for in the initial stages of your company formation. This is so you can have an overview of Malaysia in order for you to decide if you truly want to register a company here. This visa is valid for 30 days
Multiple entry visa
This visa allows you to make any number of trips to the country for a period of three months up to a period of 12 months. This visa is useful when you begin the incorporation and registration process of your company in Malaysia.
This visa works on the same basis of the Multiple Entry Visa. That is, you are allowed to make any number of entries into Malaysia while the visa is valid. However, unlike the Multiple Entry Visa, this visa is valid for two years and can be renewed easily. Moreover, this visa also allows dependents of immediate family as well. The process towards obtaining this visa will be explained in detail further down in this article.
Permanent residency permit
If you wish to register either a sole proprietorship or a partnership in Malaysia, as a foreign national you will need to have a permanent residence in Malaysia.
To apply for any of the aforementioned visas, individuals can do so either online or through their relevant Malaysian embassies. This however, is with the exception of the business visa. The process of how to obtain a business visa in Malaysia will be detailed below:
Steps towards acquiring a business visa in Malaysia
Step 1- Ensure you have met the prerequisites
- The purpose of your visit should always be clearly stated.
- You are not allowed to stay past the validity of your visa, unless you are granted an extension.
- You must have a bank statement that states you have sufficient funds for your stay in the country.
- All your travel documents must be valid and not close to expiry
- You will need to have a medical certificate proving you are of sound health.
- You will need to have either no, or a cleared criminal record.
Step 2- Gathering the documents
Now, in order to apply for the Malaysian business visa, you will need to ensure you have the following documents ready at hand:
- A passport which is valid for a minimum of six months. Two pages need to blank for the visa stamp.
- An application for the visa submission, this must be signed by you.
- Two colour photographs that meet the following specifications:
- The dimensions have to be 45mm by 35 mm
- A white background must be present
- Front viewing face
- Applicant’s face should have a neutral expression
- Applicant’s face must cover 70% of the photograph
- Proof of accommodation of stay and proof of duration of stay must be provided.
- If you have a residency in Malaysia, this must be provided as well
- A supplementary letter from your company’s resident director
- Bank statement of three months to prove one has sufficient funds.
Step 3- submitting the documents
It should be noted, you will need the resident director of your company to make this application for you. When submitting the documents, the relevant visa payments will have to be made as well.
In Malaysia, a business visa costs RM 410, however this excludes printing and postage fees. Moreover, at this point you may ask your resident director to submit applications for any dependent visas. These dependent visas are for immediate family and cost RM 100 per head. These too, can be subsequently renewed.
Step 4- Obtaining the visa
Once you have submitted all the documents, if everything is valid, you will receive a notification that your application has been accepted. As such, his process may take up to five business days to be verified and will subsequently take about 10 to 15 business days to be approved. Once you receive your business visa to Malaysia you may begin to make any number of trips to Malaysia within the duration of validity. Once the visa reaches its 2 year validity, you may submit it for renewal.
Can a foreigner open a business in Malaysia?
Yes! Foreigners are allowed to open only a private limited company or Sendirian Berhad (Sdn Bhd). And an important note, foreigners are not allowed to start sole proprietor companies, partnerships, unlimited companies, enterprises, or LLP in Malaysia, but need at least a single local partner.
How do apply for a business visa?
Steps for applying a business visa in Malaysia:
- Fill Application Form (DS 160)
- Get a Photograph.
- Pay Business Visa Fee.
- Business Visa Fingerprinting.
- Take Interview Appointment.
- Attend Visa Interview.
What types of visa available in Malaysia?
Following types of visas are issues for the foreign nationals by Malaysian Government:
- Single Entry Visa.
- Multiple Entry Visa
- Business Visa
- Transit Visa.
For visa applying guidelines: