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Published: Monday December 6, 2010 MYT 3:54:00 PM
Updated: Monday December 6, 2010 MYT 5:02:55 PM

New resident pass to retain foreign talent and lure diaspora

PUTRAJAYA: A resident pass will soon be made available to highly-skilled expatriates seeking to continue living and working in Malaysia on a long-term basis, as well as former Malaysian citizens.
Unlike an employment pass, the resident pass will not be tied to an employer, can be issued for a longer period of 10 years and be renewable beyond this. Spouses of resident pass holders can also seek employment in Malaysia.

"The resident pass will also be made available to our diaspora - those originally from Malaysia - as well as their offspring who no longer hold Malaysian citizenship.

"The resident pass is one way to offer them a linkage to Malaysia and give them the flexibility to return, whether to work or be with family members," Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Tun Razak said here Monday when launching Talent Corporation Malaysia.

"In undertaking economic transformation, Malaysia must build both world-class companies and world-class talent. The transformation will require the efforts of both Malaysians and foreigners.

"There is broad agreement that Malaysia must look at all sources of talent, including Malaysians, our Malaysian diaspora and foreigners both in the country and abroad," he said.

This was one of two new policies Najib announced Monday aimed at attracting and retaining the best foreign and local talents, whose skills and expertise will play a vital role in the success of the Economic Transformation Programme (ETP) and for Malaysia to achieve developed and high-income status.

The Immigration Department will start receiving applications for the resident pass by April 1 next year.

The other policy, Najib said, was allowing selected students in the Public Service Department's (PSD) scholarship programme to serve their bond outside the civil service.

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