The Work Permit

A Work Permit can only be applied for by a company.

The application has to be made to Immigration.

A work Permit is issued at the same time as the visa to stay in Malaysia.

It is normally (but not always) issued for 2 years, then an other 2 years, then one year (but without guarantee everytime).

And then the whole, full application has to be redone.


The Company

The company, to be able to get a work permit for you as a 'Westerner', must be a
Sdn. Bhd. (Sendirian Berhad, means Incorporated in Malay) - with a minimal paid-up Capital of RM 350,000.00 (Since 1st January 2009. It was RM 250,000.00 prior to the new rule).

At the moment it is no more possible to have a Labuan Offshore Company (LOC).

More to this read here.


Why do you have to have a work permit

Some Westerners do a little bit of odd-jobs illegally, without work permits.

The danger of doing so is that, there are other Westerners around, who have gone through the whole hassle of getting a Work Permit (mostly by having their own company registered) and who dislike your free competition and will denounce you at the Immigration.

99% of the Westerners will not do this, but I personally know two people, who are still here in Langkawi today and who have done that. It's not good.

Take special care if you are here with a yacht and are doing Charter Business. The legal businesses are organised and pay the fishermen or who ever reports you doing so along the coast. :-)

If you are caught working illegally, you will be deported immediately.

If you are lucky, you might also be in Prison and have to sleep on a naked concrete floor with nothing underneath.

You'll get NO personal items, and you'll have to wait until someone comes and pays a hefty fine to get you out. I am not joking.

So you have to either find a company that can help you in getting a work permit or you have to register your own business. But as there are very few large companies who could employ you, you will probably have to register your own company.

How to register your own company, see here.