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MALAYSIA – MDEC Announces Changes to Employment Pass Application Process

Malaysia Digital Economy Corporation (MDEC) has announced that, on 15 November 2017, it will introduce reduced and more consistent processing times for employment passes, a new online application portal and new service fees, paid online in advance of application submission.

New Processing Times

MSC Approval (Stage 1) MSC Endorsement (Stage 2) ICT Approval (Stage 1) ICT Endorsement (Stage 2)
Current (working days) 3 14-21 5 10-14
New (working days) 7 2 7 2
  • MDEC will remain as the main focal point for all application matters and will liaise directly with the Immigration Department of Malaysia (IDM) on the endorsement of passes.
  • The new, improved process will include approval from MDEC and IDM within a service level agreement (SLA) of seven working days from date of submission. Endorsement of passes by IDM is expected to be completed within an SLA of two working days from date of submission.
  • Above processing timelines apply to new and renewal applications. Applications involving transition of employers are expected to take longer due to additional requirements.
  • Timelines are subject to submission of complete information/documents to support application processing. For returned cases, the above SLA will apply once complete information is provided to MDEC.

Online Payment

Moving forward, MDEC will no longer accept payment via bank-draft, banker’s cheque or cashier order. Starting 15 November 2017, payment to MDEC inclusive of immigration fee must be made through online payment facilities such as online bank transfers, credit cards or debit cards.

Revised Charges

The following is the new fee structure for MDEC services:

Services (New & Renewal Applications) MDEC Fee for MSC (incl. GST 6%) MDEC Fee for ICT (incl. GST 6%)
Employment Pass (EP)

(including Transfer of Endorsement and Cancellation of Passes)

RM2120 RM2968
Dependent Pass (DP) / Social Visit Pass (SVP) RM530 RM530
Amendment of Approval Letter RM106 RM106
  • These charges are per applicant
  • The payment of service fees to MDEC must be made ‘’prior to Stage 1 submission’’ while the immigration fee must be paid to MDEC during submission of passports for endorsement procedures (Stage 2).
  • Payments are non-refundable.

New Online Portal

MDEC is expecting to roll out an enhanced version of their ‘’’eXpat’’’ online portal which will cater to both MSC and ICT status companies. The new portal will be available for use on 15 November 2017.

Transition Arrangements

MDEC will transition from the current version of the eXpat portal to the enhanced version on 15 November 2017. MDEC has established the following cut-off dates allowing companies to plan and complete processing of ongoing cases using the current system. Failure to comply with these cut-off dates will lead to automatic annulment of ongoing cases, thus forcing companies to resubmit fresh applications through the new system thereafter.

Stage 1 (Approval)

  • Companies may proceed with Stage 1 applications using the current eXpats system until 10 November 2017 (before 12.00 midnight). Meeting this dateline would allow companies to receive a decision on Stage 1 applications before 15 November 2017. Incomplete applications received on 10 November 2017 will be automatically cancelled and the company required to reapply using the new eXpats system from 15 November 2017 onwards.
  • For “kept in view” (KIV) applications (Stage 1), companies must revert to their designated MDEC client manager before 10 November 2017 (before 12.00 midnight). Failure to comply will result in automatic cancellation of pending cases.
  • Companies may wish to use the new eXpats system from 15 November 2017 onwards based on the revised guidelines stated above.

Stage 2 (Endorsement)

  • For stage 1 approvals issued before 15 November 2017, companies are allowed a grace period until 29 December 2017 using the current eXpat system to complete endorsement procedures (Stage 2). Under the current eXpat system, the processing timeline and MDEC fee will remain unchanged. Delays in completing Stage 2 by 29 December 2017 will lead to automatic cancellation of Stage 1 approval and the company will be required to reapply using the new eXpat system.
  • For KIV applications (Stage 2), companies must revert to their designated MDEC client manager before 29 December 2017. Failure to meet the deadline will result in automatic cancellation of pending Stage 2 applications.
  • Companies may wish to use the new eXpats system from 1 January 2018 onwards, based on the revised guidelines stated above.

MDEC will perform system enhancement and data migration works from the old to the new eXpats system from 10 November 2017 (after 12.00 midnight) until 15 November 2017. The eXpat system (current and new) will not be available for company use during this time, and no counter submissions will be accepted on Monday 13 and Tuesday 14 November 2017.

Background

Malaysia Digital Economy Sdn Bhd (MDEC) processes Employment Passes for Information Communication Technology (ICT) companies and companies registered for Multimedia Super Corridor Malaysia (MSC Malaysia) status. The Expatriate Services Division (ESD) of the Ministry of Home Affairs (MOHA) is another agency which issue Employment Passes for foreign nationals in Malaysia.

Action Items

  • Information Communication Technology (ICT) companies and companies registered for Multimedia Super Corridor Malaysia (MSC Malaysia) status in Malaysia should work closely with their immigration supplier to manage pending and upcoming employment pass applications.

This news alert was prepared using information provided by Permit Pro.

DISCLAIMER: The information contained in this immigration alert has been abridged from laws, court decisions, and administrative rulings and should not be construed or relied upon as legal advice. If you have specific questions regarding the applicability of this information, please contact Peregrine © 2017 Peregrine Immigration Management Ltd.