16 years. 43,466 applications from 131 countries. None approved this year…

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Malaysia My Second Home (MM2H) has been an initiative by the government to attract foreigners who wish to stay in Malaysia for their retirement. I think this is a good programme. These retirees needed a place to spend their money. It’s good to give them a happy place for them to continue spending their money. In fact, if they come from countries where their currency is stronger, then spending it here in Malaysia meant stretching their money tremendously. In 2019 however, it does seem the MM2H is no longer as smooth as it was in the years before. None of this years’ applications have been approved.

Article inthemalaysianreserve.com MM2H has attracted 43,466 applications since its launch in 2002 until November 2018. Applicants from China dominated with 13,892 approvals over the period, followed by Japan (4,882), Bangladesh (4,187), the UK (2,729), Korea (2,568), Singapore (1,492), Taiwan (1,428), Iran (1,411), Hong Kong (1,087) and India (1,077), forming the top 10 list.

A recent report from Reuters said that MM2H attracted 251 applications from Hong Kong in 2019 against the 193 approved in 2018. This may be due to the current demonstration in Hong Kong currently. Currently, successful entrants to the MM2H programme are given a social visit pass and a multiple entry 10-year visa which can be renewed.

In a written reply in Parliament last week, Housing and Local Government Minister Zuraida Kamaruddin said only 15% of the participants in the MM2H programme had purchased properties in the country, where the majority of the buyers are from China. Zuraida also shared that foreign participation in the Malaysian property market remain small, accounting for just 0.4% of total sales. Article in themalaysianreserve.com here.

I favour these successful MM2H applicants buying a property versus just renting one. Buying one property meant that they are much more serious with their stay here in Malaysia. MM2H is not a programme which has been abused. if there is really a need, by all means change the requirements etc. However, to continue putting on hold all the applications without any new update is not a good sign to all future applicants. Perhaps they will be the best target for the Budget 2020’s RM600,000 high-rise units in Kuala Lumpur. Cheers.

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<Featured Image is courtesy of Stock Photos from EpicStockMedia>

Next suggested article: Investing out of the city you live in.

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