The recent launching of Penang Symposium on Malaysia My Second Home (MM2H) by the honourable Minister of Tourism, Malaysia, Datuk Seri Tengku Adnan in conjunction with Penang International Property Expo 2007 on 17th March 2007 at PISA Penang reaffirmed Malaysian government initiatives to continue aggressively promoting MM2H programme to foreign expatriates (with spouse and children) who wish to long-stay or retire in Malaysia on a social pass with a 10-year multiple entry visa. The MM2H programme was introduced in 2002 replacing the Silver Hair programme since 1996.
Long stayers under MM2H programme sharing their first hand account of living experiences in Penang…from left Mr John B.A. Pater–Dutch, Mr Vincenzo Castelli-Italian, Dato’ Syed Mohd Aidid-Symposium Chairman, Ms Patricia Jozina Peters-Dutch, Mr Hideki Kato- Japanese and Mr Peter Burstow-Briton.
According to the minister, currently there are 9,551 foreigners residing in Malaysia under the MM2H programme and 3,000 more expatriates coming to Malaysia this year. The tourism ministry is hoping to woo 100,000 expatriates to join the MM2H programme by year 2010. To attract more participants, a MM2H center has been set up in May 2006 which acts as an one-stop center for MM2H programme.
More than 120 participants comprises of interested participants, licensed MM2H agents, journalists, tourism officials, housing developers and real estate agents attended the symposium. The event was indeed an opportunity for the participants to listen and meet the minister directly on issues and matters relating to MM2H as well as to get latest information update and overview on the MM2H programme from top officials of ministry of tourism Malaysia. The participants were also briefed by Penang Tourism Action Council on Penang scenario. More info on Penang’s attractions and tourism programmes at www.tourismpenang.gov.my.
It is commendable that the ministry has posted the guidelines and updated its website on MM2H in three languages on the information about the MM2H programme such as eligibility, terms and conditions on financial requirements, how to apply, incentive and FAQs on fixed deposits, investment, employment, education, home purchase, car purchase and income tax. Procedures on house purchase and acquisition of properties, tax procedure for sale of property are also posted on the website. The website also provides a list of licensed MM2H agents (total 124 agents) in Malaysia and type of services offered by licensed companies as well as their charges.
According to the first hand account by several long stayers during the Penang Symposium, Penang remains their preferred city to live in. In addition to the incentives offered under the MM2H programme, there are many plus points and attractions that makes Penang a popular destination by the second homers. Penang has been ranked as the 10th most liveable city in Asia. Related link at Making Penang a more liveable city. Penang prime residential properties are comparatively cheaper or affordable and value for money compared to other cities in the region. Its currency, Malaysia Ringgit is relatively attractive vis-à-vis other major USD, Sterling, EURO currencies. Besides this, Penang has 7 private hospitals and international schools such as Uplands school, Dalat, Fairview (Inti) and Japanese school in Sungai Pinang to cater for the healthcare and educational needs of the expatriates community in Penang. Read more at Investing In Malaysia and Time’s right for second home. More updated stories at Penang the perfect home and More Japanese keen on MM2H.
The honourable Minister of Tourism Malaysia addressing the participants at the Penang Symposium on MM2H programme…
Participants at the Penang Symposium on MM2H programme…