Let Motac manage MM2H again, says former minister


IT IS better to transfer the responsibility of Malaysia My Second Home (MM2H) programme back to the Ministry of Tourism, Arts and Culture (Motac) as was the original intention.

Former minister Tan Sri Abdul Kadir Sheikh Fadzir (picture) said Motac has all these officers and their network of relevant connections all over the world to boost this programme actively.

Abdul Kadir asked the Ministry of Home Affairs (MoHA) to make a decision and announce that the present MM2H visa holders will be guaranteed an extension of another 10 years under the same present terms after the expiry of their present status.

“This would immediately ensure their position and discourage whatever intention they have to go to other countries. This announcement will also rectify whatever damages and uncertainties that might have been created from the latest announcement,” he said in a statement.

This would alleviate some of the heavy tasks off MoHA, as it is dealing with other very important national matters including problems related to about four million illegals in Malaysia, Abdul Kadir said.

He proposed for a joint committee to be set up, to engage with the relevant stakeholders for their input, especially Sultan of Johor Sultan Ibrahim Ibni Almarhum Sultan Iskandar who understands the benefits of the MM2H programme.

“As the matter is very urgent and not at all complicated, this committee should conclude their works and announce their decision in about two months.

“I understand there are a lot of new applications that have been made, under the present arrangements, and these applications have been suspended for too long. Accept the fact that a huge number of countries are also welcoming them and with much better terms and facilities,” he said.

Sultan Ibrahim recently has expressed dismay at the MoHA for its reluctance to review the new criteria of the MM2H programme and said the ministry’s decision was mind-boggling and outrageous, considering that MM2H had brought huge economic benefits to Malaysia.

His Majesty said he would now personally take up the matter soon with Prime Minister Datuk Seri Ismail Sabri Yaakob, especially since Johor is a popular MM2H destination.

Abdul Kadir said the revised MM2H terms, relative to those that have been offered by other developed countries, are indeed “very harsh and baffling” with Malaysia seems to be giving an impression that the whole world is begging to come to Malaysia to make it their second home.

“We must do everything possible to stop them and believe me there are a huge number of countries now waiting for them with better terms and facilities. In fact, a large number of countries are already competing actively for this market,” he said.

On Sept 18, the Malaysia My Second Home Consultants Association (MM2HCA) said that it hoped the MoHA will arrange a dialogue with it and related industry players to revise the MM2H programme’s terms.

“MM2HCA hopes MoHA will arrange a dialogue and engagement with us and related industry players to consider multiple objectives in mind, to revise the programme with better terms to attract genuine and good-quality applicants, and make our MM2H programme the best and most attractive in the market,” it added.

To recap, under the revised terms of the programme, financial requirements have been increased. Applicants must have offshore income of RM40,000 — up from RM10,000 previously — while they must also have at least RM1 million in a local fixed deposit account for a year — from RM150,000 to RM300,000 previously.

They must also have liquidity of at least RM1.5 million. Meanwhile, the social visit pass duration has been shortened to five years from 10 years previously, while a yearly visa fee of RM500 will be imposed.