Malaysia My Second Home suspension due to Sabah minister’s ‘no show’ at meetings, agents not renewing permits

Dato Sri Tiong King Sing

By Shikin Louis

KUCHING, June 9: Malaysian Minister of Tourism, Arts and Culture (MOTAC) Dato Sri Tiong King Sing has clarified that Sabah Minister of Tourism, Culture and Environment Datuk Christina Liew’s absence at federal meetings has led to the suspension of all licensed agents’ operations in handling Malaysia My Second Home (MM2H) applications.

He also expressed his disappointment in Liew’s failure to delegate a single representative to the table to understand the situation.


“Liew criticises the policies of the MM2H, yet refuses to attend meetings personally to understand the details of the programme related to agent registration.

“If she does not fully understand this policy issue of the MM2H, she has failed to take the necessary steps to fully grasp its entire policy,” he said in a statement yesterday (June 8).

Tiong revealed that he has repeatedly called on Liew to address tourism issues in Sabah but issues discussed beforehand have not been resolved.

He also said that when it comes to matters of tourism, policies must be adhered to before criticisms are made, adding that it relates to national safety and reputation.

“If basic tasks are not handled well, how can we attract foreign visitors to boost the tourism industry?

“Liew is welcome to take full credit for bringing visitors to Sabah through direct or chartered flights but the safety of tourists must come first,” he added.

Pointing out that the renewal of MM2H visas is unrelated to MM2H agent permits, he stressed that it is not whether Sabah is allowed to appoint its own agents or not, but Liew should understand the issues that could lead to abuses of power.

He said he has repeatedly brought up to the Federal Cabinet that existing agents of MM2H must re-register themselves to address the prevailing problems of agents subleasing their permits or disappearing with collected agency fees.

“Agents must strictly adhere to transparency including only collecting fees for applications once they are successfully approved.

“The MM2H agent permits in Malaysia must be reapplied with MOTAC after the latest regulations are released (or gazetted).

“MOTAC will not recognise existing agents; all expired permits must be reapplied for and undergo strict background checks.

“Renewal of permits is only approved for those who qualify under the new regulations,” he explained.

Additionally, he noted that he has informed the Federal Cabinet that authority in this MM2H matter will be delegated to Sabah and Sarawak.

This will be followed with a meeting between him and the Chief Minister of Sabah and Premier of Sarawak respectively on the matter. — DayakDaily