Malaysia Startup Visa – Types & Requirements To Apply

  • Post category:Malaysia

If you are a foreign business owner with a company in Malaysia, applying for a Malaysia startup visa is a crucial aspect to ensure all your business operations can be done accordingly. Launching a company in Malaysia as a foreigner is more challenging than it is for Malaysians since one major condition for directors in private limited companies is that they live in Malaysia.

While you can form your business online, you must present proof of residency in Malaysia to be qualified to serve as a director. Because you can only receive a work visa through your firm, this creates an ongoing circle of not being able to obtain a visa owing to your inability to establish your company.

By following the guide below, will make sure you will have minimal complications in operating your company in Malaysia.

Malaysia Startup Visa

WHAT ARE THE TYPES OF WORK VISAS THAT ARE AVAILABLE IN MALAYSIA?

  1. Professional Work Permit Visa (DP10)
  2. Malaysia Tech Entrepreneur Program (MTEP)
    1. Professional Visit Pass (PVP-MTE)
    2. Residence Pass (RP-MTE)

HOW DOES THE PROFESSIONAL WORK PERMIT VISA (DP10) WORK?

If you want to start a business in Malaysia, you can apply for the Professional Work Permit Visa (DP10). The DP10 visa is intended for skilled foreign expatriates and is also known as an Expatriate Visa or a Director Visa.

This work visa has an initial validity duration of 1-2 years. However, it can be extended if you want to stay in Malaysia for a prolonged time. You must be between the ages of 27 and 50 to apply for this visa.

If you are under the age of 27, you will be required to provide further paperwork. You can also apply for a dependent pass for your immediate family with this visa.

It is vital to know that to apply for this visa, you must have a Malaysian employer. This implies that you must first create a Malaysian company before applying for a work visa.

To be eligible to apply for work permits, your company must have a paid-up capital of RM 500,000 – RM 1,000,000, depending on whether it is completely foreign-owned and the industry in which it operates. Furthermore, the company’s shares owned only by foreigners must be worth at least RM 500,000.

HOW DOES THE MALAYSIA TECH ENTREPRENEUR PROGRAM WORK?

  • Malaysia Digital Economy Corporation (MDEC) and Malaysia Digital Hub (MDH) launched the MTEP in 2017 with the goal of facilitating the country’s digital start-up ecosystem by offering work visas for international tech entrepreneurs who wish to build firms in the ASEAN market from Malaysia.
  • Under this program, you can apply for two types of visas, which are: –
  1. The Professional Visit Pass (PVP-MTE)
  2. The Residence Pass (RP-MTE)

DIFFERENCE BETWEEN THE PROFESSIONAL VISIT PASS (PVP-MTE) AND THE RESIDENCE PASS (RP-MTE)

The difference between these two programs can be seen below: – 

No. Professional Visit Pass (PVP-MTE) Residence Pass (RP-MTE)
1. For new entrepreneurs For established entrepreneurs
2. Validity – One year Validity – Up to five years
3. The office must be located at a Malaysia Digital Hub Can apply for dependent pass for family

WHAT ARE THE TARGETED SECTORS FOR THE MTEP?

Among the targeted and eligible sectors that can apply for MTEP are as follows: –

No. Sector
1. Agriculture technology
2. Health technology
3. Drone Technology
4. Financial Technology
5. Smart City
6. Clean Technology
7. Cyber Security
8. Smart Mobility
9. Artificial Intelligence (AI)
10. Blockchain
11. Big Data Analytics

If you are unsure about the sector or business activity of your company, do not hesitate to contact Relin Consultants

WHAT ARE THE SECTORS THAT ARE NOT ELIGIBLE FOR MTEP?

A list of the sectors or activities that are not eligible for MTEP are as follows:

No. Sector
1. Trading or reselling activities
2. Manufacturing
3. Telco service provision
4. Consultancy services
5. Software integration
6. Co-working spaces
7. Activities related to service (design and support, freelance, outsource)

REQUIREMENTS OF A NEW FOREIGN ENTREPRENEUR FOR MTEP

  • Is a non-Malaysian who has no criminal record in their own country.
  • Is self-employed and has a creative digital company idea as well as a great digital proposition.
  • Has a minimum of RM50,000 in their personal bank account for at least three months prior to applying.
  • Has a recognized sponsoring organization registered with Malaysia Digital Hub (MDH) or Malaysian Global Innovation & Creativity Centre (MaGIC) that can attest to your presence in Malaysia and will be responsible for your stay, upkeep, and repatriation while in Malaysia. If you are unable to identify a sponsoring organization, MDEC will act as your sponsor.
  • Has enrolled in one of the MDHs

REQUIREMENTS OF AN ESTABLISHED FOREIGN ENTREPRENEUR FOR MTEP

  • Is a non-Malaysian who has no criminal record in their own country.
  • Is self-employed with a solid digital proposition and a track record of success (more than 3 years established with the latest 2-year financial records).
  • They have a minimum of RM 50,000 in their personal bank account.
  • Has evidence of business performance.
  • Has a Malaysian individual over the age of 21 as your sponsor who can attest for your presence in Malaysia and will be responsible for your stay, upkeep, and repatriation while in Malaysia.
  • For venture capital, you will need a  founder, co-founder, or Malaysian Venture Partner with a minimum investment of RM10 million and registered with the Securities Commission Malaysia as a Venture Capital Management Corporations (VCMC).

FAQs

What are the fees for the registration of the Professional Visit Pass (PVP-MTE) and the Residence Pass (RP-MTE)

The fee for the registration of the Professional Visit Pass (PVP-MTE) is RM2,650, while the fee for the registration of the Residence Pass (RP-MTE) is RM5,300.

How long does it take to complete the application process for MTEP?

Usually, the application process for MTEP will take up to 4 weeks.

Where can I register for MTEP?

The registration for MTEP can be done via their official website. However, we strongly recommend you to seek advice from our agents at Relin Consultants before making any applications, to ensure your registration has a higher chance of approval.

If my business is not in the tech industry, will I be eligible to apply for a Malaysian visa?

Yes, you will still be available to apply for a Malaysian visa if your business is not in the tech industry. You will need to apply for a visa via the Professional Work Permit Visa (DP10).

How can I get an entrepreneur visa in Malaysia?

To get an entrepreneur visa in Malaysia, you will need to follow these steps:

  1. Identify a viable business opportunity in Malaysia that you wish to pursue.
  2. Incorporate a company in Malaysia and obtain the necessary licenses and permits to operate the business.
  3. Prepare a business plan that outlines your proposed business activities and how you intend to grow and develop the business.
  4. Apply for a Malaysia Entrepreneur Visa through the Malaysian Immigration Department or the Malaysian Investment Development Authority (MIDA).
  5. Provide all the required documentation, which may include your passport, company registration documents, business plan, financial statements, and other supporting documents.
  6. Attend an interview with the Immigration Department or MIDA to discuss your business plans and intentions.
  7. If approved, you will be issued an Entrepreneur Visa, which will allow you to live and work in Malaysia while operating your business.
  8. It’s important to note that the specific requirements and procedures for obtaining an Entrepreneur Visa in Malaysia may vary depending on your country of origin and the type of business you wish to start. Therefore, it’s advisable to seek the assistance of a qualified immigration consultant or lawyer to guide you through the process.

How can I start a startup in Malaysia?

Starting a startup in Malaysia involves several steps. Here’s a general guide to help you get started:

  • Develop a business idea: Identify a gap in the market or a problem that needs to be solved, and come up with a unique and viable solution.
  • Conduct market research: Analyze the market to determine the demand for your product or service, and gather information on your competitors, potential customers, and industry trends.
  • Create a business plan: Develop a detailed business plan that outlines your objectives, strategies, financial projections, and marketing plan.
  • Register your company: Register your company with the Companies Commission of Malaysia (CCM), and obtain the necessary licenses and permits to operate your business.
  • Build your team: Hire the right people with the necessary skills and experience to help you run and grow your startup.
  • Secure funding: Raise capital to fund your startup, either through self-funding, crowdfunding, angel investors, venture capitalists, or government grants.
  • Launch and promote your startup: Launch your product or service, and promote it through various marketing channels, such as social media, advertising, and public relations.
  • Stay compliant: Ensure that you comply with all the legal and regulatory requirements, such as taxation, employment, and intellectual property laws.

Starting a startup in Malaysia can be a challenging but rewarding experience. Seek advice from experienced entrepreneurs, join networking events, and leverage government initiatives like the Malaysia Digital Economy Corporation (MDEC) to help you succeed.

What is a Category 2 visa in Malaysia?

There is no official reference to a “Category 2 visa” in Malaysia’s immigration system. However, it is possible that the term may be used informally to refer to one of the following visas:

Professional Visit Pass (PVP): This visa is for foreign nationals who are employed by a company outside of Malaysia and need to travel to Malaysia for work-related purposes, such as attending meetings, giving lectures, or conducting site visits.

Employment Pass (EP): This visa is for foreign nationals who have been offered employment by a Malaysian company and meet the minimum salary and qualification requirements.

Dependent Pass (DP): This visa is for dependents of foreign nationals who hold a valid work visa in Malaysia, such as an Employment Pass or a Professional Visit Pass.

It’s important to note that the specific requirements and procedures for obtaining a visa in Malaysia may vary depending on the type of visa and the applicant’s country of origin. Therefore, it’s advisable to seek the assistance of a qualified immigration consultant or lawyer to guide you through the process.

Which country offers a startup visa?

Several countries around the world offer startup visas to foreign entrepreneurs who wish to start or scale their business in their respective countries. Some of the most popular startup visa programs include:

  • Canada: The Startup Visa Program allows entrepreneurs to immigrate to Canada and receive support from designated Canadian venture capital funds, angel investor groups, or business incubators.
  • France: The French Tech Visa program enables foreign entrepreneurs to obtain a residence permit in France and develop their startup projects with the support of a French Tech ecosystem.
  • Germany: The German Startup Visa program enables non-EU entrepreneurs to launch and scale their businesses in Germany and receive support from local accelerators and incubators.
  • Netherlands: The Dutch Startup Visa program allows foreign entrepreneurs to establish innovative startups in the Netherlands and receive mentorship, funding, and support from Dutch companies and investors.
  • Singapore: The EntrePass program offers startup visas to foreign entrepreneurs who wish to launch or scale their businesses in Singapore and contribute to the country’s economy and innovation ecosystem.
  • United Kingdom: The Innovator Visa program enables foreign entrepreneurs with innovative business ideas to launch their startups in the UK and receive support from approved endorsing bodies.

These are just a few examples of countries that offer startup visa programs. The specific requirements and procedures for obtaining a startup visa may vary depending on the country and the program. Therefore, it’s advisable to research and seek the assistance of a qualified immigration consultant or lawyer to guide you through the process.