Tuesday, December 10, 2013

Restrictions on reselling of houses in Penang

To curb property speculation, the Penang Government has put in place restrictions on selling of houses. This will come into effect from February 1, 2014.

From The Star:

Penang to place restrictions on reselling of houses
GEORGE TOWN: Houses in Penang purchased for RM400,000 and below will soon be barred from being resold within a specific time period without the consent of the state.

It was announced that the Penang Government would impose stringent housing rules from Feb 1 next year to curb property speculation.

Chief Minister Lim Guan Eng said affordable homes bought for below RM400,000 on the island and RM250,000 on the mainland cannot be sold for five years, while low- and low-medium cost housing units priced up to RM72,500 statewide cannot be sold for 10 years.

He said owners of these units who want to sell them during the period would have to appeal to the state government first and units can only be sold to qualified "listed buyers" registered with the state housing department.
Lim said in a press statement Sunday that the ruling covers past and future purchases.

Monday, November 11, 2013

How Fixed Deposit can Help You Earn Credit Card Benefits

Most banks in Malaysia now offer various credit card promotions that cater to different needs. All Malaysian banks are very competitive in terms of giving you the best package so that you will choose their brand over their competitors. Currently, banks including Standard Chartered Bank, CIMB, RHB, American Express, Citibank and Hong Leong Bank give excellent rewards. Whether you love to travel, dine, shop or watch movies and hang out at clubs, you can most certainly find a credit card you can use that will give you more free gifts, reward points and discount benefits in terms of dining, travelling or entertainment. But if you’re just looking for cash back advantages, then you need to specifically search for the banks that will give you back some cash.

So how does fixed deposit help you earn credit card benefits? Consider the cashback benefits of various banks in Malaysia:

RHB’s Evo Card Standard gives 20% cash back whenever you watch movies. They also provide additional reward points when you pay online. What’s more, they are waiving their annual fees for the first year. Another RHB card to consider with annual fees waived is the RHB Platinum Card/Platinum Card-i. They offer up to 15% cash back with 15% weekend cashback on dining, and provide a 30% birthday cashback at participating outlets. RHB Platinum Card also gives double rewards points on flights and tours. Chartered Bank’s JustOne Platinum MasterCard gives up to 15% cashback at Petrol stations. You can get RM300 when your card gets approved after applying online. Meanwhile, UOB’s One Card Classic offers cash back of up to 5% on anything you purchase.

If you enjoy diverse lifestyle spending, Mach Credit Card will probably attract you with their up to 10% cash back on up to 12 categories. Their cashback packages include Social, Trendsetter and Savvy and they may also include other cashback categories for a monthly fee. You may also want to note that they are also waiving their first year annual fees. Hong Leong Wise Card, on the other hand, offers you 10% cash back on selected purchases. You may also change cashback categories. Another card that offers 10% cash back is the UOB Lady’s Classic Card. This card enables owners to get cash rebates on items as well as provides offers, discounts and benefits that are personalized for women.

With all the credit card promotions in Malaysia available to all types of individuals, it should be easy to determine which card suits you the most. Just remember the advantage of paying fixed monthly deposits in easy installment packages so that you may be able to get the most cash back advantages on your chosen credit card.

Written by CompareHero (, one of the leading financial comparison portal in Malaysia. We aim to guide people on their financial matters, and help them to save money and time. Please do check our website to learn more.

Sunday, October 20, 2013

Camera museum in Penang

If you are a photographer or a photography enthusiast, here's a museum you may be interested to visit on your next trip to Penang.

In tribute and celebration of the invention, history and importance of the camera, a dedicated museum has opened its doors in Penang.

Located in a two-storey pre-war shophouse at 42, Muntri Street, the museum stamped its mark as the first museum devoted to cameras in Malaysia as well as South-East Asia.

The museum, which was officially opened last Thursday, housed over 300 vintage cameras.

Source: The Star

Saturday, October 19, 2013

Petronas Twin Towers in Pink for Breast Cancer Awareness Month

Catch the Petronas Twin Towers all illuminated in pink tonight. For the first time, the country’s most iconic buildings are being illuminated in the signature pink of Estee Lauder Companies’ annual global Breast Cancer Awareness campaign. More..

Saturday, September 28, 2013

2013 KL Tower International BASE Jump

Image source:
Are you here in Kuala Lumpur this weekend? If you are, here is an event you may want to watch.

KL is hosting the 2013 KL Tower International BASE Jump this weekend plus Monday with 100 BASE jumpers launching themselves off from the 421m KL Tower located right here in the city.

Read more about the 2013 KL Tower International BASE Jump.

Tuesday, September 03, 2013

Diesel and RON95 petrol price increase

Image source:  The Star
The price of RON95 petrol and diesel has been increased by 20 sen today making it RM2.10 for RON95 and RM2.00 for diesel. The image above is but one of many petrol stations across the country that saw a long queue for petrol to beat the price increase at the stroke of midnight Tuesday.

Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Tun Razak announced the decision, saying that it would save the Government RM1.1bil from September to December this year and RM3.3bil annually.

Before the revision, the price for RON95 was RM1.90 per litre and RM1.80 for diesel. The last price increase for RON95 was in 2010.

Currently, the Government subsidises 83 sen for each litre of RON95 petrol and RM1 for a litre of diesel.

The price of premium petrol RON97 remains at RM2.70 per litre since May.

The retail price of RON97 petrol is determined by a 'managed float' in which the price fluctuates according to market forces.

Here in Malaysia, the price of petrol is the same across the board meaning wherever you fill your tank in any part of the country, the petrol price is the same. There are two types of petrol sold in Malaysia, RON95 and RON97. The latter being the premium grade is the petrol available to foreign vehicles in the country.

Meanwhile, consumers reacted with anger over the 20 sen rise in RON95 and diesel prices over social networks, with many saying that increases in the price of food and other goods would now be inevitable.

Saturday, August 31, 2013

Looking for high quality Hotel Supplies and Equipment?

The sun shines here all year round so it's no surprise that people hold parties throughout the year.  No season is off season here in Malaysia and the country being multi-ethnic, there's always a party going on somewhere any time of the year.

If you are planning a party and are looking for catering supplies, do I have a site for you!

PeachSuite Hotel Supply
is what you need for all your party supplies akin to Hotel Bar Supplies including bar equipment, bar glasses, bartender supplies, ice-handling products and more.

You will find nothing but the best here as PeachSuite is committed to providing high quality supplies and equipment and at a great value too. It is a one-stop for everything you need for outdoor entertainment. 

If you are outfitting a hotel, here is where you can find all your linens, electronics, amenities and more - certainly everything under one roof to save you time and money.

PeachSuite has been in the business for over 30 years. This Atlanta Hotel Supply company has a host of vendors who are proven leaders in the hotel supply industry. It's what they do best providing services for customers in the hotel, resort, bed and breakfast restaurant, catering, and healthcare industries. If you need something, contact Hotel Supply Online and they can get it for you!

Friday, August 23, 2013

Bangladeshi workers to get special IC (Identification Card)

Malaysia has a high percentage of foreign workers who are mainly in the blue-collar sectors. A total of 1.4 million Bangladeshi workers, scheduled to be recruited in stages from early next year, will be issued special identity cards (IC).

These ICs would have Radio Frequency Identification (RFID) and biometric technology, and would function as a debit card and stored-value card (such as Touch & Go).

The cards would be colour coordinated to indicate different employment sectors. This is to prevent workers from switching jobs.

The workers would be screened to ensure that they have no prior criminal records before being recruited and those found moving sectors would be fined up to RM12,000.

More: The Star..Ahmad Zahid: Bangladeshi workers to get special IC

Wednesday, August 21, 2013

Weak earthquake jolts Kupang in Kedah

The Star reported yesterday that:

A weak earthquake of magnitude 3.8 on the Richter scale, struck Kupang in Kedah at 8.26am on Tuesday, the Meteorological Department reported.

It said in a statement that the quake's epicentre was 11km south of Baling.

Tremors could be felt in areas of Baling. - Bernama

Although Malaysia is not in “The Ring of Fire”, small quakes are still possible, although very rare according to a Meteorological Department spokesman. This earthquake could well be one of these rare occasions.

Below is Google map of both towns, Kupang and Baling in the state of Kedah which is up north of the peninsula parts of which share a common border with Thailand, the land you see on the top right of the map.

View Larger Map

Friday, August 09, 2013

Of Queenstown, accommodations and more..

Panorama of Queenstown and Lake Wakatipu from the top of the gondola: Wikipedia
The highlight of my New Zealand holiday some years ago was without doubt visiting Queenstown, a resort town in Otago in the south-west of New Zealand's South Island. Queenstown is built around an inlet called Queenstown Bay on Lake Wakatipu, a long thin Z-shaped lake formed by glacial processes. The town has spectacular views of nearby mountains such as The Remarkables, Cecil Peak, Walter Peak and just above it Ben Lomond and Queenstown Hill.

We also visited Arrowtown, a historic gold mining town in the Otago region and one of neighbouring towns near Queenstown. Our itinerary included Milford Sound, Dunedin, Mount Cook National Park, Franz Josef Glacier (here we took an optional flight to get a bird's eye view of the glacier), and of course Christchurch and a few other smaller towns - not in order.

Queenstown is now known for its commerce-oriented tourism, especially adventure and ski tourism. There are lots to see and do in this resort town. While some of us signed up for whitewater rafting, the rest of us took up various other activities. My girlfriend and I took a gondola up to the ski slopes for a feel of snow. We did a spot of shopping at the Queenstown Mall. I remember I was fascinated by a male shop assistant at a souvenir shop speaking fluent Japanese with a Japanese tourist shopper.

When on holiday, a prerequisite for an enjoyable holiday would have to include reasonably good accommodation of which Queenstown has plenty of.

Highview Apartments offer luxury accommodation with every modern convenience. Their stylish one- and two-bedroom apartments are designed with majestic views of Lake Wakatipu, the Remarkables range and the Queenstown bay.

Conveniently located, Highview Apartments are only a 5-minute walk from town and yet distanced from the hustle-bustle of traffic ensuring an enjoyable, relaxing stay.

The apartments come with Lounge and Dining Areas, wall-mounted heaters, fully-equipped kitchen and laundry, flat-screen tvs, hair dryer, iron and ironing board to name the essentials available. Here's the link to KIV for your next visit to Queenstown:

If it's a holiday house you prefer instead, there is a wide range of holiday houses available in Queenstown to suit every budget.

This one for instance is Kohara Lodge, an award-winning standalone house set into the hillside. The house enjoys magnificent views over the mighty Shotover River and is located just a few minutes drive from central Queenstown. It has 4 beds, 3 baths and sleeps 8.

While on holiday, we all want it incident-free. I remember a colleague while on holiday in Europe with her father, had to frantically look for a dentist for the old gentleman who suddenly developed a toothache. Both of them had to forgo the day's tour activities to get the tooth looked at. But I digress, but then again should you find yourself in North Island at the Tauranga area and need a dentist's help, here's a site for you: dentist tauranga nz. But I hope you won't need it.

Since we have strayed far north, we might as well go a little further to Australia where you can find cute adorable Puppies for Sale. If you are in Australia, this site allows you to buy or sell puppies and dogs.
Me!  Me!  Pick me!

Saturday, July 20, 2013

Shisha declared haram (forbidden) for Muslims

Yesterday, the Fatwa (Edicts) Committee of the National Council for Islamic Affairs declared that shisha or waterpipe smoking is 'haram' (forbidden) for Muslims.

Committee chairman Tan Sri Dr Abdul Shukor Husin said Muslims were also prohibited from providing shisha-smoking services or any activity associated with shisha.

"Shisha is clearly harmful to health; it is a wasteful activity that is categorised as a bad or despicable thing that all Muslims should avoid," said Abdul Shukor.

Abdul Shukor explained that shisha would have a huge detrimental effect in terms of the health of the individual, national economic growth and shaping of the future generations.
More on The Star..Edicts committee declares shisha haram for Muslims

Tuesday, July 02, 2013

No more Haze but blue skies here again in Kuala Lumpur

We are back to blue skies again here in Kuala Lumpur and probably the rest of the country. Spotted a plane across the blue sky this morning. It was going so fast, it even left a contrail after it.

Can you see the plane? Right there at 11 o'clock..

PSI readings look great too.

Saturday, June 29, 2013

KL Marathon 2013 postponed

The yearly popular KL Marathon, the Standard Chartered KL Marathon 2013, slated for tomorrow has been postponed to Sept 29 in the interest of public health, due to the haze situation. 33,000 runners have signed up for this year's event.

The decision was made after discussions between the organiser, Dirigo Events Sdn Bhd, partners of the event and local authorities, including Kuala Lumpur City Hall (DBKL), Department of Environment (DOE) and the Ministry of Youth and Sports. More..Standard Chartered KL Marathon 2013 postponed to Sept 29

Friday, June 21, 2013

Haze in Kuala Lumpur update - June 21 2013

Malaysia is once again going through a haze situation this time of the year when open-burning from land clearing activities in Sumatra, Indonesia, takes place.

The air quality today in Kuala Lumpur is worse than yesterday's Air Pollution Index reading. There is the pungent smell of smoke in the air today. I guess we can say that the Kuala Lumpur haze today is not getting any better and if it gets any worse, air quality will be hazardous to health.

Down south in Singapore, the air quality is even worse hitting a PSI high of 401 at noon today.

Thursday, June 20, 2013

Muar town shrouded in haze

Just like in the old days, barter trade is still alive in this part of the world. In Malaysia, this ancient mode of trade is practised between Malaysian traders on the coastal towns on the west coast of the peninsula and traders of Sumatra, Indonesia.

Muar town aka Bandar Maharani in the southern state of Johore, on the Malaysian west coast, is one of the towns engaged in barter trade with traders from Sumatra plying their wares daily in boats along the narrow Straits of Malacca.

Business has been affected these past few days due to the haze that is shrouding the west coast of Malaysia.  The haze is brought on due to the open burning in Sumatra. Every year between June and September, weather conditions deteriorate caused by this man-made haze as a result of land-clearing activities. The thick smog is brought over to the peninsula by the south-westerly monsoon winds this time of the year.

In view of low visibility, Marine police here have warned all barter-trading vessels plying the Straits of Malacca to refrain from navigating the waterway at night due to the haze.

The picture above is of Muar town along the Muar river.  It shows a bleary sight with the haze covering buildings along Sungai Muar yesterday morning.  (Sungai is the local Malay term for River).

Have you been to Muar town? Find out more about this old town from my weekend visit to Muar town Part 1 and A Weekend Visit to Muar Town Part 2.

Source: The Star..‘Don’t go out to Straits of Malacca at night’

UPDATE: Muar’s 200 schools to close temporarily from today’s afternoon session

All afternoon session schools in Muar have been directed to temporarily close following hazardous air pollutant index (API) readings recorded in the area on Thursday.

State education director Mohd Nor A. Ghani said that the API reading had touched 337 and a directive had been issued for schools to close if the reading surpassed 300.

He said, however, that students in the morning session would not be allowed to return home until the session was formally over.

Sunday, June 16, 2013

We are seeing haze again in Malaysia

Malacca shrouded in haze
The haze is back in the peninsula, on the west coast. This is the result of 46 hotspots in Sumatra noted via satellite. This would mean that land-clearing and open burning activities have started paving the way for the planting season. The southwesterly winds are bringing the smog over to Peninsula Malaysia primarily on the west coast. Read more..Haze is back on the west coast

Image source: The Star

Friday, June 14, 2013

Penang freak storm havoc

A rare occasion of strong waves of 3.5metres high hitting the west coast of Penang island and Kedah on the mainland occured on Tuesday.

Two days later, yesterday, a freak thunderstorm created havoc on the island uprooting trees and causing gridlock on major roads including jamming up the Penang Bridge. Fishermen were advised to stay onland with wind going at speeds of 40 to 50km and hour.

More on Penang storm havoc Thursday

Thursday, June 13, 2013

Foreign investors, fund managers can get 5-year multiple entry visas

Multiple entry visas for up to five years can now be obtained by qualified foreign business investors and fund managers. This is a move to attract more talent and investors to spur the country's economy.

Announcing the measures, Datuk Seri Najib Tun Razak said the move would make it easier for investors and fund managers to visit Malaysia as they would enjoy entry facilities similar to long term investors and professional expatriates.

More: The Star..PM: Foreign investors, fund managers can get 5-year multiple entry visas

Saturday, June 08, 2013

Malacca’s Jonker Street and Millionaires’ Row

Malaysia's varied architecture is attributable to her rich history of the various occupations throughout the centuries. Malacca is a good example of the different types of colonial buildings that are still in existence today.

This is Jalan Tun Tan Cheng Lock in Malacca or used to be known as Heeren Street where once the place to live for those who made it to the top.

Originally called “Kampung Belanda” (Dutch Village), it ended up with the nickname of “Millionaires’ Row” because of its well-heeled residents.

The narrow street with houses adorned with ornately decorated fa├žades was the choice neighbourhood for the prosperous Straits-born Chinese (Peranakan or Babas and Nyonyas) in the mid-19th and early 20th century.

These affluent folks competed with each other to build the most flamboyant of houses, many of which stand to this day.

While Jonker Street (from the Dutch Jonghheer) was named after a place for “young noblemen” who had not quite made it to the upper level of nobility.

Heeren Street (originally Heeren­straat), was for the “gentlemen” or “masters” in the upper crust of society.

The characteristic features of most buildings are high roofs, floors and corridors lined with intricate tiles, teak front doors carved with family names or mottos in gold calligraphy.

Most windows are also beautifully decorated with motifs while some homes even have decorated roofs with image of dragons, birds and flowers.

The houses on the street are rather narrow and small when viewed from the outside but are long and spacious inside.

This is because the houseowners then were taxed on the width of the buildings instead of the total area.

Continue reading Malacca’s Millionaires’ Row.. The Star

Malacca City was listed as a UNESCO World Heritage Site together with George Town of Penang on 7 July 2008. Malacca is approximately a two-hour drive away from Kuala Lumpur to the south.

Wednesday, June 05, 2013

Malaysians advised against travel to Turkey

The unrest in Turkey is a concern that Malaysians have been advised against travel to Turkey by the government or if you have to, avoid going to areas affected by protests in the country.

The ministry is closely monitoring developments in Istanbul and Ankara that have resulted in hundreds of people being injured in the last several days.

The unrest, which began on Friday after police cracked down on a demonstration in Istanbul, has quickly escalated to anti-government protests across the country, and at least two people have been reported killed.

Malaysians in Turkey have been advised to remain in contact with the Malaysian Embassy in Ankara, Turkey which can be contacted at +(90)312-4463547 / +(90)312-4463548 / +(90)312-4464130 (fax) / email: 

Sunday, May 05, 2013

May 5 - Malaysia Polling Day - General Election 13

Today, Malaysians go to the polls to decide on the government for the next five years. Currently, the caretaker government is the National Front (Barisan Nasional) which has ruled the country for more than five decades since Malaysia's independence in 1957.

Will Barisan Nasional continue it's 'reign' or will Malaysia see a new government from the Opposition (Pakatan Rakyat or People's Alliance) occupying Putrajaya?

Source: The Star

We will know the results tonight..

Candidates are vying for 222 parliamentary seats and 505 state seats which means some polling centres will have two ballot boxes.

Several states in the country have declared today or Monday a public holiday. Sunday is a workday in some states.

Balloting is from 8am to 5pm. Schools have been used as ballot centres.

Thursday, April 11, 2013

Flash floods wreaked havoc in Kuala Lumpur yesterday

Malaysia, not having any active volcano on her soil, does not go through the experience of any volcanic activity. However, visitors to Kuala Lumpur must have had an unpleasant experience yesterday if they happened to be in parts of KL that were affected by flash floods after a thunderstorm in the evening.

Nothing to be proud of, these floods in the city centre, but we could do better, of course. A couple of pictures here on the flash floods in KL to expand on the story.

Weather is not expected to improve today according to the Met department.

Still, enjoy your visit with us! Welcome to Malaysia, Truly Asia!

Wednesday, April 10, 2013

Polls on May 5, EC announces

Yep, the much-awaited Polling day for GE13 will be on May 5, on a Sunday. Read more..

Wednesday, April 03, 2013

Malaysia General Election 13 (GE13) is on!

Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Tun Razak announced this morning that the King has consented to the dissolution of Parliament today, Wednesday.

Elections will have to be held in the next 60 days. More..Malaysia Parliament has been dissolved paving the way for GE13

Thursday, March 28, 2013

Kuala Lumpur is hazy today

It is a hazy day in Kuala Lumpur today. Smells like someone's having a huge barbecue party. Air quality looks pretty bad.

As I am writing this, it looks as though we are about to get some rain, which is just what the city needs to wash away the smog that is hovering overhead.

In the image above taken this morning, the Petronas Twin Towers are but a watermark against the sky.

Sunday, March 24, 2013

Formula 1 is in Kuala Lumpur this weekend

If you are in Kuala Lumpur and noticed a lot more tourists than usual the past week or so, it could be due to Formula One (F1) being in town.

That's right, this is F1 weekend here in the city. It's all happening at the Sepang International Circuit (SIC) from 22 to 24 March.

If you are visiting KL as a tourist and was having difficulty securing a hotel room, F1 could also be the reason. Hotel accommodations in the city and surrounding areas have been booked solid and at easily three times the rate of a non-F1 period. Take a cue here, if you plan to visit KL on a Formula One period, best to book months ahead to secure accommodation.

Read more about the huge Formula 1 event on exclusive merchandise sale, exhibitions, concerts, etc.

Image source:

Friday, March 22, 2013

Malindo Air on its maiden flight - from Kota Kinabalu

Malaysia's second low-cost carrier takes to the skies today, March 22.  It's maiden flight is from Kuala Lumpur to Kota Kinabalu at 6:50am.

Malindo Air is more than a low-cost carried being set up positioning between full-service airlines and low-cost carriers. In the local context, Malindo Air stands in between Malaysia Airlines and Air Asia.

Malindo Air takes off from KLIA (KL International Airport)..

Read more about Malindo check out pictures of the aircraft.

Image source:

Monday, February 25, 2013

University of Reading to offer free UK-based online courses

Malaysia is not only a popular destination for medical tourism, Malaysia is becoming a popular destination for higher education further boosted by more and more foreign universities setting up their campus here in the country.

Recently it was announced that the University of Reading will soon be providing free UK-based online courses from partner institutions accessible to prospective students directly through their computers and mobile devices.

The University of Reading is in the course of setting up its Malaysian campus in Johor.

From The Star..

THE University of Reading, regarded as one of the better known universities in the United Kingdom (UK), will be providing free online courses soon.

The varsity will launch the initiative as part of Futurelearn together with some of UK’s top tertiary institutions, which British Prime Minister David Cameron announced recently when he led a trade mission to India.

Futurelearn, he said will establish the UK as a global leader in online higher education, offering world-ranking UK university courses to students throughout the world. The online courses will be available to students in the latter part of the year.

The news comes as the University of Reading prepares for its ground-breaking ceremony on the site of its Malaysian campus at EduCity@Iskandar in Johor.

More..Free UK-based online courses

Sunday, February 10, 2013

Happy Chinese New Year!

Today is Chinese New Year or Spring festival, i.e., the first day of this most important Chinese festival. It is also the first day of the Year of the Snake. Chinese New Year is celebrated for fifteen days.

You can read about what we do on the First day of Chinese New Year and about the Reunion dinner on Chinese New Year eve.

Happy Chinese New Year!

Sunday, February 03, 2013

Auspicious days to start work after Chinese New Year festival

It is exactly a week from today when the Chinese community all over the world celebrates the most important festival of the lunar year, i.e., the Chinese New Year or Spring festival.

Chinese families are busy going about cleaning up their home and shopping for Chinese New Year goodies. The latter includes shopping for new clothes to wear to usher in the new year, decorative items including tangerine plants, pussy willow stalks and other flowering plants to adorn the home, and foodstuff synonymous with the happy occasion.

In Malaysia, more than 30% of the population are of Chinese descent so Chinese New Year is widely celebrated here. If you visit Malaysia this time of the year, you will notice the air of festivity everywhere and a hive of activity all over the country, from villages and small towns to big cities like Kuala Lumpur, Georgetown (Penang) and Johor Bahru down south, neighbour to Singapore.

Another aspect related to Chinese New Year is the annual exodus of people making their way back to their hometown to celebrate the festival with their family. In a few days time, roads all over the country will see more traffic than usual as people begin to make their journey home.

Chinese New Year is celebrated for fifteen days but people start getting back to work towards the end of the week. It is believed that the day one starts work after the Spring Festival will determine whether one will have a good year ahead. What is an auspicious day to start work then?

This article on Auspicious days and dates to start work after Chinese New Year 2013 in Year of the Snake can give you an idea in picking a best day to go back to work.

I wish you all a Happy and Prosperous Chinese New Year of the Black Water Snake!


Wednesday, January 30, 2013

Foreign workers to pay levy instead of employers with immediate effect

With the introduction of minimum from RM600 - RM700 per month to RM900 monthly, the Cabinet has decided that foreign workers to pay levy instead of employers with immediate effect. Read The Star article below:

PUTRAJAYA: The Cabinet decided on Wednesday that foreign workers should pay the levy instead of employers.

The decision is to be enforced with immediate effect on new foreign workers and those who wish to renew their work pass, employment pass or temporary work visit pass.

The move is to alleviate the hiring cost for employers, said Finance Minister II Datuk Seri Ahmad Husni Hanadzlah.

“The minimum wage, which came into force this year has raised the salary for all workers on an average of between 30% and 50%, or from RM600- RM700 per month to RM900 monthly.

“The Government's move to impose a levy on foreign workers will not be a burden to them as the levy paid is between RM34.16 and RM154.16 per month as compared to a salary increase of between RM300 to RM500 per month,” Ahmad Husni said in a statement Wednesday.

The collection of levy for foreign workers was introduced in 1992 and was fully borne by the workers until 2009 when the Government decided to shift the levy burden to employers.

The 2009 decision was aimed at controlling the increase in the number of foreign workers in the country at that time.

MCA President, Dr Chua Soi Lek, is also pursuing the proposal to the Human Resources Ministry that foreign workers pay their own levy, transport and housing costs as a way of easing the burden on industries following the implementation of the minimum wage policy.

Tuesday, January 29, 2013

Johor set to become an international film-making hub

The southern state of Peninsula Malaysia, Johor, has seen much development in the last few years. In future, you will see movies that will be shot in studios in that area. Read The Star article below:

JOHOR BARU: Johor is set to become an international film-making hub in the region with the opening of the Pinewood Iskandar Malaysia Studios (PIMS) in Nusajaya this May.

PIMS chief executive officer Michael Lake said Tuesday that nine film production companies from Australia, Germany, Japan, Thailand, the United Kingdom and the USA had expressed keen interest in doing their pre-production shooting at the studio.

He said two feature films and three telemovies for international audiences would be produced at the studio in the first year but declined to give more details.

View Larger Map

Tuesday, January 15, 2013

Malaysian corporations bidding for UK Stansted Airport

Malaysia may be a small nation but Malaysian corporations have acquired huge assets in other countries. Following last year's acquisition by the SP Setia-Sime Darby-Employees Provident Fund consortium of the Battersea Power Station project, yet another bid has been made to acquire another iconic UK asset, the Stansted Airport, the third busiest in London and fourth busiest in Britain.

YTL Corp Bhd and Malaysia Airports Holdings Bhd (MAHB) are putting together a firm bid for London's Stansted Airport in an 80:20 equity structure, sources told StarBiz, confirming earlier reports.

The low-cost carrier terminal is being offered for sale by UK airports operator Heathrow Airport Holdings Ltd, formerly BAA, to satisfy competition concerns after a four-year battle with regulators. The reported figure is £1bil (RM5bil).

More: The Star.. YTL, MAHB in combined offer for RM5b UK airport

Saturday, January 05, 2013

Fee raised for Indonesian maids

Employers will have to pay more to employ an Indonesian maid or domestic-worker.

The Star reported that:

The Malaysian Association of Foreign Maid Agencies (Papa) has been given the green light by the Government to increase the fee structure for Indonesian domestic workers to RM6,700.

This is a RM2,189 increase from the RM4,511 agreed to in the memorandum of understanding signed between the Malaysian and Indonesian governments in 2011.

Papa president Jeffrey Foo, who announced this yesterday, said that besides the new fee, employers would also have to pay RM1,800 upfront as salary advance.
More..Fee structure for Indonesian maids to be raised to RM6,700

Tuesday, January 01, 2013

Happy New Year 2013 from Malaysia!

Here's wishing You a Very Happy New Year and may the new year bring with it new hopes and good tidings!

Like everywhere around the world, Kuala Lumpur saw revellers and fireworks ushering in the new year.

At Petronas Twin Towers, KLCC..
Source: The Star

More on Happy New Year 2013 Celebrations in Kuala Lumpur and elsewhere

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