Immigration consultant's notes. Startup in Malaysia.
In 2017, according to U.S. News & World Report, a multi-platform news and information publisher, Malaysia has been rated as the number one investment country.
If we add that Malaysia is extremely highly regarded in terms of protecting investments and training young talented businessmen, it is not surprising why this corner of Southeast Asia is considered by many supporters of startups as ideal for implementing innovative ideas.
At the initiative of the Government of Malaysia, in order to attract foreign businessmen from all over the world (founders and co-founders of startups) and assist them in the development of their projects, the Malaysia Tech Entrepreneur Program (MTEP) was developed and implemented.
Currently, the program includes two options.
Option one - for young entrepreneurs (not having a track record). It provides for a residence permit with the right to work as a self-employed person for a period of 1 year. The applicant is the owner of an innovative business idea. To participate in the program, authorization of the Malaysian Digital Hubs or MTEP partner is required, which acts as a guarantor and is responsible for the applicant for the entire period of stay in Malaysia (including repatriation).
The minimum amount of personal finances is RM 50,000. Application processing time is 4 weeks. The option does not entitle members of the applicant's family to obtain a residence permit.
Option two - for successful entrepreneurs (having a track record of more than 3 years with the provision of financial statements for the last 2 years). It provides for a residence permit with the right to work as a self-employed person for a period of 5 years. The applicant is the owner of an innovative business idea.
The minimum amount of venture capital for the implementation of the project is RM 10,000,000 (the involvement of a Malaysian venture partner is possible).
To participate in the program, a surety of a local individual or legal entity is required, confirming the information provided by the applicant and bearing responsibility during the applicant’s stay in the country. The minimum amount of personal finances is RM 50,000. Application processing time is 2 weeks.
The closest family members: spouse, child under 18 years of age, child with disabilities can also apply for a residence permit. The applicant’s wife is entitled to work (subject to certain restrictions & conditions).
After registering a company in Malaysia, there is the possibility of obtaining permission to stay in the country to members of the team of the author of the startup project.
The tax conditions are also very attractive: the corporate tax rate of a resident company is 24% (with "exemptions" for small businesses up to 17%), the maximum tax rate on personal income is 30%.
For questions on organizing Startup projects in Malaysia, obtaining visas, arranging financing, and optimizing taxation, please contact our specialists.