Sabah Housing and Real Estate Developers Association have urged the government to relax the condition set in the latest Malaysia MySecond Home (MM2H) programme.
The resumption of the MM2H programme in October with revised requirements.
Among the most problematic for the applicants was the minimum monthly offshore income which was raised from RM10,000 to RM40,000 per month.
Its president Datuk Chua Soon Ping said the government’s move to raise the bar defeats the spirit of the programme of encouraging foreigners to invest in Malaysia. He said the previous MM2H programme should be renewed with the original terms.
He said the country foreign investments as the economy has been badly affected by the pandemic.
“The spirit of MM2H and the social pass is to attract qualified foreigners to spend more time in Malaysia, allowing social, cultural and economic exchange.
“Foreign spending and investment will help boost the local economy.
“In times like this, we should be lowering thresholds to attract more foreign investment, to help boost the local economy.
“We should attract more foreign knowledge workers, skilled workers, professionals and entrepreneurs who will have a positive impact on the building of our nation,” he said in a statement today.
Chua said the new MM2H schemes requirement are not only unattractive but are also too high.
He said Malaysia risk losing it all as the country is also competing with other countries like Thailand, Singapore and Australia. The real estate market is already impacted due to the pandemic and the lockdown, how can the country move towards speedy economic recovery if such stringent policy is implemented in October.
He said that we should not deviate from the intent and purpose of the original objective by drastically changing the basic terms especially during challenging times like this. For example, raising the active income requirement from RM10k to RM40k per month is unrealistic, as the pandemic affected the whole world, including the applicants.
“With such high financial requirement, the applicant actually has plenty of options to choose from.
With the new cash and income requirement, applicants can easily get a Permanent Residency (PR) visa in some countries, instead of just a 5 years renewable social pass that MM2H offers,” he said.
Chua said Malaysia has already missed the golden opportunity in 2020 as many wealthy Hong Kong Chinese left the island nation when it was facing political turmoil.
“Many of them wanted to come to Malaysia but our doors were closed. More parties should be consulted on the formation of such policies, especially stakeholders in the real estate industry as a significant part of the programs allow the purchase of properties in Malaysia,” he said.
Towards this end, Chua opined the MM2H programme should not come under the immigration department’s purview, but that of the International Trade and Industries Ministry (MITI) or the tourism authorities, which promote more visitors into Malaysia.
“The Immigration Department can be a part of the deciding committee but the jurisdiction however should be handled by the Ministry of Tourism or agencies that actually do the job of promoting Malaysia, as they would better understand the market and know the needs of customers,” he said.
Chua said the focus on persons who have an active income overseas indicates the person is most like working or running a business.
“In such case, what is the possibility of those with active work or business overseas staying 90 days a year in Malaysia?
“This requirement is equivalent to the requirement of a PR visa in many countries (but MM2h is just a 5 years social pass),” he said.
The following is a comparison chart of the West Malaysian MM2H requirements and how it differs to the S-MM2H programme in Sarawak. The details are sourced from the MM2H Club (mm2h.club).