Thursday, March 12, 2009

Maybe 100,000 foreign spouses - but only 8,600 given Entry Permits in last 7 years

It is shocking that in the past 7 years (2001 - 2008) ,Entry Permits have been only been issued to 8,600 foreign spouses (and their children) - when it is estimated that there may be at least 100,000 foreign spouses in Malaysia today. The Minister, in his reply to Parliament failed to give us the other important statistics - i.e. the number of foreign spouses in the country today...who have still not got their Entry Permit.

MORE than 8,600 foreigners, who are the spouses and children of Malaysians, have been given entry permits to stay in the country. Home Minister Datuk Seri Syed Hamid Albar said 2,439 of them were Thais. The second largest group of 1,955 were Indonesians, followed by Indians, 1,785, Singaporeans, 846, Filipinos, 578 and other nationalities, 1,019. These permits were issued from 2001 to last year. Syed Hamid was replying to a question by Tan Ah Eng (BN-Gelang Patah). - New Straits Times, 12/3/2009, Entry permits for foreign spouses

As soon as the marriages are registered in Malaysia, foreign spouses of Malaysians should immediately be given Entry Permits, which would give them permanent residence status.

A marriage in our Asian context, is not just a bonding with 2 individuals, having responsibility only for each other and for children of their marriage. In our Asian context, marriage is also the 'marrying of 2 families' - and hence the responsibilities of a spouse also extends to the parents and family of the other spouse as well.

In the event, that there is an unexpected death of the Malaysian spouse (before the foreign spouse has been here more than 5 years and have had obtained her Entry Permit), the current situation in Malaysia will not allow the foreign spouse to continue to remain here in Malaysia and look after children of her marriage (who will be all Malaysians) and/or the parents/relatives/dependents of her now deceased Malaysian spouse. And this is definitely not right.

The foreign spouse then may have to uproot her Malaysian children - and go back to their country of origin. Is this right? But, the problem is that even if the foreign parent wishes to stay in Malaysia, with the children, it is generally not possible...considering her ability to remain in Malaysia depended on her Malaysian spouse being alive.

The foreign spouse then may have to leave the elderly parents/dependents of her now deceased Malaysian spouse and leave the country...

The foreign spouse may also have to leave the matrimonial home in Malaysia and go back...

And, that is why there must be a change in the law, and Entry Permits must be issued to the foreign spouse on the point of registration of a marriage. (Of course, Entry Permits could always be revoked later - if there is fraud, etc...)

Entry Permit (EP) is a permit issued to foreigners who are not citizen of Malaysia entering to reside in this country. Those who have been issued with EP are exempted from applying for any type of Pass either for employment or other purpose.
  • Wife of Malaysian Citizen residing in this country on long stay Social Visit Pass / Temporary Employment Pass / Employment Pass on a year-to-year renewable basis CONTINOUSLY for 5 years or more.

  • Application can be made using an IM.4 Pin 1/93 Form with a local sponsor by husband of applicant.

Enquiries can be forwarded to :-

Visa, Pass and Permit Division
Entry Permit Unit,
Department of Immigration, Malaysia
Level 3, Block 2G4 (PODIUM) Precint 2,
Federal Government Administration Centre,
62550 Putrajaya.

Tel No : 03-88801391, 03-88801373
Fax No : 03-88801374
or any department nearest to applicant.

Ministry of Human Resources.
Tel No : 03-8886500
Fax No : 03-8882378
Website :

The payment for issuance of Entry Permit is RM 120.00

  • Children of Malaysian Citizen below 6 years old.
  • Application can be made using an IM.4 Pin 1/93 Form sponsor by father / mother / close relative of applicant who is Malaysian Citizen / Permanent Resident of Malaysia.

  • Spouse and children of Malaysian Citizen who posess expertise / skills and overseas working experience, planning to return and work in Malaysia (under the programme to encourage Malaysian Citizens with expertise residing overseas to return to Malaysia).
  • Approval of this application will be given within 6 months from the date submition to the Immigration Department.
Source: Official Website of the Immigration Department of Malaysia

Discrimination also happens now - with this new policy to get Malaysians with skills/expertise now working overseas back to Malaysia.

As a lure, the government is giving their foreign spouses and children Entry Permits within 6 months from the date of application. Sometimes, these applications can also be made before the actual return.

For Malaysians who have been living(working, etc...) in this country all the while, their foreign spouses will only get their Entry Permits after more than 5 years have lapsed. No time is also specified as to when they will get the Entry Permit after submission of their applications.

This Discrimination must end...

This is an issue concerning children...and it must be a priority

This is an issue concerning the elderly...and it must be a priority

This is an issue concerning family ...and Asian values...and it must be a priority.

With regard to foreign spouses of Malaysians, there should also be no more requirement for Work Permits of any kind, upon the receipt of Entry Permits.

Read also my earlier posting/s on this matter:- Foreign spouses should get PR status on registration of marriage


MYblog said...

Very Frankly, we get the impression that the gormen is not keen to allow foreign spouses to have permanent residence in Malaysia. That is why the rig moro.

However thousands of others such as Indonesian labourers have gained permanent residence. The foreign spouses are not even given a temporary identification which is generally given to maids. So they have to carry their passport or ricked being harassed by the police and immigration officials.

The thing is quite simple, don't like it, you can leave.

Little Napoleons everywhere waiting for an excuse to refuse the foreign wives.

Pertinent questions that should be asked in Parliament are as follows

1. How many foreign wives have so far applied for permanent residence.

2. How many have been granted PR

3. What is the average time taken for granting of a PR.

4. How many in total excluding foreign spouses have been given PR

5. What was the average time taken to grant this "other" category a PR

6. What was the basis of granting this "other" category PR

7. Under which statute of law were these "others" granted PR

8. Are male spouses allowed PR

9. What are the steps taken by the home ministry to make the entire process more efficient

10. Like the issuing of passports etc, is the home ministry planning to impose a time limit on the processing of these applications

These are the questions our parliamentarians should be asking.

Maybe when we get the answer to this, there will be more transparency. So far everything is shrouded in a cloud of secrecy, why ? only GOD knows.

They have no conscience and do not bother after all most of these applications are from non bumiputras who have no special rights or ketuanan

aavaz said...

I am researching on the issue of foreign spouses, could I correspond with you on this matter? I would greatly appreciate if you could share statistics etc. I could share with you data collected by myself and my colleagues.
My contact:
Best wishes

Chiwi said...

What about foreign men married to Malaysian women huh? Anyone care to enlighten me regarding what I can do to stay here without getting an entry permit every 6 months???

I have 2 Malaysian born children, been in Malaysia for nearly 6 years and have grown roots here. But I and others like me know it's impossible to get a PR.

I'm White, from New Zealand, so I get the impression I'm pretty much the last person the Government wants here.

I know of many couples in the same position as my wife and I. And it doesn't matter how educated any of us are, we're married to Malaysian Women - the rules are only in favour of foreign women married to Malaysian MEN.

This situation stinks to high heaven. Fix it now or you are guilty of knowingly and willingly breaking up families and marriages. At the very least, you're going to lose some very talented people and your reputation overseas will be mud.