MALAYSIA: MDEC Foreign Knowledge Worker Projection for 2020 Opens 3 December 2019

December 3, 2019

MSC/ICT status companies who are registered with the Malaysia Digital Economy Corporation (MDEC) can start to apply for their 2020 Foreign Knowledge Worker (FKW) projection for Employment Passes from 3 December 2019.

How does it work?

  • Multimedia Super Corridor Malaysia (MSC Malaysia) status companies and Information Communication Technology (ICT) companies registered with MDEC who intend to employ foreign nationals in Malaysia in 2020 must have the projection approved before any Employment Pass applications can be made.
  • Applications must be made online via MDEC’s eXpats portal with the company’s respective login ID.
  • The standard processing time for FKW projection is approximately 5-10 working days from the date of submission. This timeline is also subject to follow-up requests from MDEC for additional information or documents especially if the company submits a high-volume FKW projection for 2020.
  • Information required for the projection includes the total number of Malaysian staff and foreign staff employed by the company, the projection request for new and renewal Employment Passes and a justification for this projection.
  • MDEC has requested that only companies requiring FKW projection for the first quarter of 2020 proceed with their submission at this time, while other companies should file their projection request as and when required, throughout 2020. However, any MSC or ICT status companies can submit their projection from 3 December 2019, and MDEC is expected to review requests according to their processing capacity.
  • In the meantime, the submission window for FKW projection for 2019 is still open until 14 December 2019.  Note that unused balance of 2019 FKW projection will be forfeited by 31 December 2019.

Our Advice

MSC Malaysia status and ICT companies registered with MDEC and intending to employ foreign nationals in Malaysia in 2020 should ensure that they provide the required information and documents in support of their projection application as soon as possible, to avoid any delay.

Employers who may be affected are encouraged to contact a Newland Chase immigration specialist for case-specific advice.

For general advice and information on immigration and business travel to Malaysia, please email us at