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The Malaysian government has reiterated the need to further facilitate the entry and retention of foreign talent, alongside efforts to attract and recruit local talent, in order for the country to thrive.
“Notwithstanding our priority to Malaysian talent, we recognise foreign talent complements Malaysian talent,” said YB Dato’ Sri Abdul Wahid Omar, Minister in the Prime Minister’s Department, in a dialogue session with expatriate leaders yesterday.
“Foreign talent in the short run helps address critical skill gaps and in the longer term, blends with Malaysian talent to provide greater diversity of our talent pool, in line with Malaysia as an innovation-led economy.”
To emphasise this, government leaders – including Deputy Secretary-General of the Ministry of Home Affairs, Dato’ Wahab bin Mohd Yasin; Director-General of the Immigration Department of Malaysia, Dato’ Mustafa Hj Ibrahim, and CEO of Talent Corporation Malaysia (TalentCorp) Johan Mahmood Merican – raised awareness about the Residence Pass – Talent (RP-T), which offers flexibility for foreigners to live and work in Malaysia.
Since its launch in April 2011, this work pass has been approved for more than 2,800 foreigners who can now live and work in Malaysia with their spouses for up to 10 years.
The RP-T allows holders to change employers during this 10-year period without having to reapply for another employment pass.
A number of expatriate professionals who attended this dialogue session expressed the ease of use as the RP-T as a great attraction for foreign talent.
“It’s always a nice feeling to know that you’re wanted, not to mention being part of – and actively contributing to – the country’s growth, said Richard Leetham, CEO of SapuraAcergy.
Christoper Kelly, managing director of Malaysia Design Centre, Intel Malaysia, said: “Many people now consider Malaysia not just a temporary career choice, but also as a lifestyle choice. We look forward to working here long term, share our expertise and help to create jobs.”
To be eligible for the RP-T, employees must already have a valid employment pass and a minimum gross taxable income of RM144,000 per annum. They must also have filed for income tax in Malaysia for a minimum of two years and must have worked in Malaysia for at least three years.