PUTRAJAYA: The government is to resume the Malaysia My Second Home programme (MM2H) in October, after suspending it a year ago.
Home Ministry secretary-general Wan Ahmad Dahlan Abdul Aziz said the Cabinet decided on this at its meetings on July 14 and 30.
This was part of decisions made to improve policies under the national recovery plan (NRP) to kick-start the economy.
The MM2H programme was suspended for a review by the tourism, arts and culture ministry and related agencies following the Covid-19 pandemic.
“New applications will be processed and coordinated by the immigration department (JIM), beginning October 2021, after all related legal processes are completed,” Dahlan said at a press conference at the ministry today.
He said the government understood the concerns involving any influx of foreign nationals into the country through this programme.
“The government has agreed to set a ceiling for the number of participants (the principal and their dependents) at any one time. They would not be more than 1% of the population of Malaysia.
“The home ministry guarantees that only qualified participants, without past criminal records, will be allowed to take part in the MM2H programme,” he said.
He said 10 new criteria will be introduced under the MM2H.
Among them is a duration of stay of at least 90 days (cumulative) in a year, with an offshore income of at least RM40,000 a month, compared with RM10,000 before this.
Aside from that, they must have permanent savings of at least RM1 million, from which a maximum 50% can be used to purchase property, and take care of the health and education of their children.
He said the social visa pass will be valid for five years. This can be extended by another five years and beyond, so long as participants abide by the set criteria.
“Among the other criteria is a declaration of liquid assets of at least RM1.5 million.
“The pass fees will be raised to RM500 a year (from RM90). The processing fee will be set at RM5,000 for the principal participant and RM2,500 for each dependent.
“Pass renewals and any changes to the nationality of participants and their dependents will also be vetted for safety.”
Participants must also present a letter of good conduct for themselves and their dependents, Dahlan added.
He said, so far the top 10 countries with the highest number of applications for the MM2H programme are China (with 1,000 applicants), Japan (more than 200), the United Kingdom, Bangladesh, Korea, Singapore, the US, Australia, Taiwan and Indonesia.
However, Dahlan said people from certain countries were on the banned list due to the ongoing Covid-19 pandemic.