The Malaysian Brain Drain: The Chinese are still leaving for other countries…

Thursday, 25 Jun 2020 12:02 PM MYT


KUALA LUMPUR, June 25 — Stalled reforms and perceived discrimination will keep up the chronic brain drain that has hampered Malaysia’s economic development at a time regional rivals are catching up to or surpassing the country, said Fitch Solutions Country Risk & Industry Research.

In a research note today, the Fitch Solutions unit highlighted the continuation of race-based affirmative action as a major cause of local talent choosing to head abroad for better opportunities.

The firm also said the needed reforms — planned or promised — were unlikely to take place now as the country has been plunged into political instability, which in turn has prompted politicians to return to peddling populist measures.

“A chief example would be affirmative action policies favouring the ethnic Malay population (Bumiputra), which is likely to continue to cause a ‘brain drain’ where talented non-Malay members of the population seek opportunities overseas.

Last year, recruitment firm Hays’ published a report that said nearly half of employers in Malaysia were not confident they would be able to find the talent vital to expanding their local operations.

As far back as 2011, the World Bank already warned that Malaysia was losing one in five of its graduates to migration, primarily to Singapore’s benefit.

“These race-based policies will be very difficult to address and look set to slow the pace of economic development for the foreseeable future.”


21 January 2019

Why Malaysians choose to stay put in foreign lands

Saravanan Forever  |  Published:

LETTER | In December 2014, the South China Morning Post published an article that reported that many Muslim Malays have emigrated. At the time, Umno was the government. Many Malay political parties started to panic over the article. The politicians during that era started to please the Malay majority, requesting them to return home.

The same news portal claimed that about 400,000 Malaysians had left the country in 2014. Many left for Singapore, Australia, US, UK and Canada. The number of Malaysians who chose to seek new homes abroad could be bigger if we include the numbers who also left after Merdeka. I estimate four million Malaysians have migrated.

Many of them who migrated are professionals. Although they love their motherland, it is unlikely that they have any plans to return home. This is really very sad. All these hard-working Malaysians left because they were fed up of the mismanagement in Malaysia.

The Umno government at the time started to panic over this exodus of the Malays, but it was not concerned to see that a large number of them who migrated were Chinese and Indians.

In August 2018, after Pakatan Harapan won the general election and formed the government, Mahathir and some DAP leaders issued a press statement, urging Malaysians who migrated to come back and make Malaysia strong again. But till today, as far I know, not many Malaysians abroad have heeded the call.

These Malaysians cannot be blamed for ignoring the call. Many feel that there are no equal rights in Malaysia. On the other hand, their new homeland gave them equal rights. The current government is not making more serious efforts to correct the situation, which the Umno government had failed to do.

When we read the daily Malaysian news and social media postings, we overseas Malaysians do not see any changes being made to tackle racism. If a survey is conducted to see which country is the most racist in the world, I personally think Malaysia will make it to the top 10.

The racism in Malaysia is regrettable. It was not like this 35 years ago. Then Malays, Chinese, Indians and other races used to live harmoniously. Today, racism has reared its ugly head. Something has gone wrong.

The authorities were supposed to play a greater role to keep the country on a steady course but, unfortunately, they have been playing the divisive race card for the past 60 years. The impact of racial politics on the country is damaging. It has spawned hatred among Malaysians.

In the past, many police reports have been lodged against those playing up racist sentiments but very little action had been taken.

To stop hatred and discrimination in Malaysia, the country’s lawmakers should urgently implement anti-racist and anti-discrimination policies. Because of the anti-racist policies being practised overseas, many Malaysians are able to survive without any problem.

There is no other way for Malaysia to attract Malaysians living overseas. The country must implement such laws and the police must charge anyone who incites racial hatred.

If the authorities do not wake up and act fast, no doubt more Malaysians will migrate.

As a Malaysian who is living in a foreign land, I would like to see Malaysia become great again. The authorities including politicians and the police must work towards this end.

This article is not to hurt anyone’s feelings but to tell how Malaysians living abroad feel about Malaysia. There must be a change for the better.

The views expressed here are those of the author/contributor and do not necessarily represent the views of Malaysiakini.



Malaysia’s Human Resource Ministry estimated in 2015 that there were about 350,000 Malaysians working in Singapore and another 386,000 Malaysians with permanent residency status. Jan 28, 2018


25 November 2018

Rep: Too many Malaysians working in Singapore

  • Nation
  • Thursday, 16 Aug 2018

ISKANDAR PUTERI: A Pakatan Harapan assemblyman has claimed that the high number of Malaysians working in Singapore will create problems for Johor if left unchecked by the authorities.

Larkin assemblyman Mohd Izhar Ahmad, from Parti Pribumi Bersatu Malaysia, said the state government or the relevant ministries should seriously consider a specific approach in handling the issue.

He said the weakened ringgit since 2016 was one of the major factors that had driven Malaysians to find employment in the republic.

“The number of Malaysians shuttling between Johor and Singapore for work every day had once been recorded to reach 400,000.

“The sudden and uncontrolled increase in workers to Singapore will create many transit workers and contribute problems to social development, economy and culture of the state,” he said in his debate during the Johor state assembly sitting yesterday.


The Independent

Malaysia’s Finance Minister wants Malaysians working in Singapore to return home

Speaking to local journalist Sumiko Tan, Lim noted that Singapore has a knack for hiring their neighbours across the Causeway and said:

“You give employment to some of our best chaps … You look at so many industries, they’re all staffed by Malaysians.

“If we don’t value our own talent, do you blame other countries for helping them? What I need to do is to make Malaysia more attractive again…a place of hope…and I’m sure that Malaysians will come back.”

He added: “You can’t beat the food here, the space and greenery, the natural beauty. You can’t beat the people here, the heritage, the culture, everything.”

Last month, Lim told a group of entrepreneurs at an event that they can “beat Singapore at their own game” instead of “losing” to the little red dot “every time”.

According to Malaysian publication The Star, Lim shared that it is time Malaysia gave some economic competition to Singapore and that Malaysians must have a “can do spirit”. Lim is quoted as saying:

“For example, why must we lose to Singapore every time? Beat them at their own game, you can do it. Penang has beaten them many times.

“I’m not being anti-Singapore here but I’m just trying to motivate you that you can do it! After all if you look at Singapore, they use many of our people (talents).”


About 1,000,000 Malaysians are still overseas.

No one knows how many Malaysians hold Permanent Residency in other countries while retaining their Malaysian citizenship.

18 September 2017

Chinese the first to be targeted if there is no peace, PM fears

The Chinese community would be targeted should Malaysia ever descend into chaos, Prime Minister Najib Abdul Razak said.

This Najib said, is why the government is committed to keeping the country peaceful.

“If there is no peace in our country, what will happen? The Chinese will be the first to be targeted if there is no peace in this country.

“That is why we are a moderate government, we are committed to the peace and harmony, mutual respect to this country.

“We fight the Islamic State (terrorist group), we make sure they don’t harm Malaysians including the Chinese in Malaysia,” he said in his speech at the “Malaysian Chinese Patriotic Rally” held at the Putra World Trade Centre today.

22 May 2017


2013: 900
2014: 606
2015: 616
2016: 398
Total: 2,520. Each person costs RM26,000.

The ‘not so talented’ TalentCorp?

Mariam Mokhtar

COMMENT | On June 1, Shareen Shariza Abdul Ghani of Talent Corporation (TalentCorp) Malaysia will have spent one year in her role as CEO. She succeeded Johan Mahmood Merican, who spent five years as TalentCorp’s CEO.

TalentCorp was formed in 2011, and it received RM65 million to entice Malaysians to return home. In 2014, Johan expressed disappointment that despite various incentives, including tax exemptions on the cars that applicants imported into Malaysia, only 2,500 of the 1,000,000 overseas Malaysians had returned. The cost of enticing them is an eye-watering RM26,000 per person.

Either the incentives provided are worthless, or the Cambridge-educated Johan was ineffective as CEO, or applicants wanted something of substance to add to the value of their families’ lives back home.

At the time of Johan’s outburst over TalentCorp’s failure to attract more Malaysians, one political cynic said, “You can put lipstick on a pig, but it will still be a pig. You can wrap fresh belacan in a fresh piece of paper, but it will stink to high heaven when you open the parcel.

“TalentCorp is a waste of time. How many millions of ringgits have been spent in trying to woo skilled and professional Malaysians to return? Johan should advise Shareen and the PM to close TalentCorp.

“In the first place, TalentCorp should invest the money in trying to stop talented Malaysians from leaving, or from being snapped up by other nations like Singapore or Taiwan.

“These countries are on the lookout for talent, like the Ipoh-born Tan Zhongshan, who was offered an Asean scholarship after his ‘A-levels’. He received a first-class honours in Bachelor of Arts (Law) at Queen’s College, Cambridge. Amongst the many prizes he won was the ‘Slaughter and May’ prize. Tan now works in the Singapore legal service.”

24 April 2017

Malaysians emigrating to New Zealand: How many? No figures given here…

Newcomers from the U.K. increased 12 percent, to 14,999, while those from China rose 5.4 percent, to 12,358. Indian arrivals tumbled after a 38 percent slump in those coming on student visas. While Australia was the biggest source of immigrants, at 25,557 people, almost two-thirds of them were New Zealand citizens returning home.

19 April 2017

This Malaysian Chinese lass, Dr Lam Shu Jie who has a PHD in Chemical Engineering got a breakthrough in medical science at Melbourne University in super bug research.

She got her scholarship from the Australian government but not Malaysia. China had just awarded her the illustrious Young Overseas Chinese Award (2016-2017) in Beijing.The PRC Health Minister Gao Qiang personally handed the coveted award to her.

Now China, Australia and Singapore are fighting to recruit her at their research centre respectively.

Wonder why Malaysia is not trying to lure her back ?

这位马来西亚华人女士蓝舒潔博士(化学工程)在墨尔本大学进行了Super bug(一种细菌)的研究,使她在医学科学方面的突破。

她获得澳大利亚政府的奖学金,但不是马来西亚。中国刚刚在北京向她颁发了杰出的” 2016-2017 华侨华人”奖。中国卫生部部长高强亲自向她致以羡慕的荣誉。



YB delivers congratulatory letter frm YAB to Lam Shu Jie, PhDstudent who discovers potential altrntive to antibiotic

20 Sep 2016

UK in Malaysia

🇬🇧 Retweeted Foreign Office


UK in Malaysia

🇬🇧 added,


30 Sep 2016

Ms. Lam Shu Jie, M’sian Phd student who may hv found the solution to antibiotic-resistant bacteria appeared on Australian TV!


8 September 2015

However, there are other, darker-themed factors to consider, as the World Bank report suggested. A sense of social injustice seems to be a push factor for many. Perceptions of social injustice appear to feature prominently in the decision to migrate or return-migrate, the report said.

SEPTEMBER 7, 2015 8:00AM

A closer look at brain drain in Malaysia

FREE: A closer look at brain drain in Malaysia

Embedded image permalink

The brain drain issue affecting Malaysia has been much talked about, yet the specifics of the problem remain very much a mystery. How large is the Malaysian diaspora? Where is Malaysian talent abroad located? Why do they leave in the first place? KINIBIZ explores these areas.

“Malaysia faces an exodus of talent. Not only is our education system failing to deliver the required talent, we have not been able to retain local talent of all races nor attract foreign ones due to poor prospects and a lack of high-skilled jobs.” (NEAC, 2010a, p 60)

The above statement was cited in a World Bank report in 2011, titled “Malaysia Economic Monitor: Brain Drain”, clearly to illustrate a problem that Malaysia was facing at the time and continues to face even today.

At the time of writing, no current data is publicly available on the total number of Malaysian professionals who have left the country for greener pastures abroad and where they are located.

The most comprehensive reports on the brain drain issue have been by the World Bank, the most recent of which was published in June this year, titled “Improving The Effectiveness of TalentCorp’s Initiatives”.

According to Sally Raj, managing director of Robert Walters Malaysia, the talent drain stems from the promising opportunities being presented to Malaysians to study or further their education abroad.

“A majority are attracted by the chance of being in a more holistic and less academic education environment. Those graduate or further education programmes offered in our neighbouring countries are also perceived to be stronger. Most Malaysians end up staying in that country to gain overseas work experience where some of them progress to have very successful careers.

“Another major factor is the career development and growth opportunities presented to them outside of Malaysia. A lot of regional hubs and senior regional roles are based outside of Malaysia and many professionals aspire to work in a bigger environment with a more diverse job scope,” she told KINIBIZ via email.

The 2011 World Bank Economic Monitor report concurred with Sally somewhat. Through interviews the World Bank conducted in Malaysia, Singapore, and the US, it found that lower salaries in Malaysia as well as a lack of career and educational opportunities motivated Malaysians to seek better opportunities abroad.

However, there are other, darker-themed factors to consider, as the World Bank report suggested. A sense of social injustice seems to be a push factor for many. Perceptions of social injustice appear to feature prominently in the decision to migrate or return-migrate, the report said.

“Factors such as unequal access to scholarships and higher education seem to be of significant concern, particularly among the younger population within the non-bumiputera community.”

Then, there is quality of life.

“Differences in quality of life matter both in the decision to emigrate and the rationalisation of the decision to remain abroad. As part of this, safety and security issues are likely to be an important component.

“In the Malaysian context, stories of kidnappings and armed robberies appear to be shared widely in the diaspora community and form a narrative to justify the decision to remain abroad,” the report said.

22 November 2012


81,950 M’sians gave up citizenships through past 20 years

Posted on 22 November 2012 – 04:53pm
Last updated on 22 November 2012 – 08:01pm

KUALA LUMPUR (Nov 22, 2012): The Dewan Rakyat was told that a total of 81,950 Malaysians had relinquished their citizenship through the past 20 years from 1992 up to August this year.

Home Minister Datuk Seri Hishammuddin Tun Hussein, however, did not say which country the former Malaysians had migrated to.

Hishamuddin gave the figure when replying to a question by Karpal Singh (DAP-Bukit Gelugor) at the Dewan Rakyat sitting today.

Karpal wanted to know how many Malaysians had relinquished their citizensip in the past 20 years. – Bernama

81,950 M’sians gave up citizenships through past 20 years


“Come home,” he says. But who believes him to be sincere, the man who is Malay FIRST and Malaysian second?

Muhyiddin: Malaysians abroad, bring your expertise home

UPDATED @ 10:59:04 AM 18-11-2012
November 18, 2012

GOLD COAST, Nov 18 — Deputy Prime

GOLD COAST, Nov 18 — Deputy Prime Minister Tan Sri Muhyiddin Yassin today urged the Malaysian diaspora of experts abroad to return home and help Malaysia progress at even faster pace through their expertise.

With the diaspora estimated to number some 1.2 million with most of them in Australia, he said their expertise and skills could be harnessed in the nation’s interest.

Malaysian experts abroad were no longer limited to the fields of medicine, accountancy and law as before as the diaspora was now also involved in other fields like specific branches of science and were researchers at universities, he said.

“The Malaysian workforce needs more specialists. Malaysia needs you to come home, the country needs your expertise,” he said at a dinner with students and Malaysians living in Queensland here last night.

Muhyiddin: Malaysians abroad, bring your expertise home


Deputy Prime Minister Tan Sri Muhyiddin Yassin, “With the strength of one million diasporas abroad based on the World Bank Report, where about 120,000 of them are in Australia, Malaysia was looking at a new way to tap those talents for the interest of the nation.”

Malaysian Insider

Malaysian scientific diaspora network to connect Malaysian scientists worldwide

November 15, 2012

GOLD COAST, Nov 15 – The Malaysian Scientific Diaspora Network (MSDN) was launched here today, serving as key platform to connect Malaysian scientists worldwide and promote collaborative research in their areas of expertise for the country’s benefit.

Launched by Deputy Prime Minister Tan Sri Muhyiddin Yassin, who is currently on nine-day working visit to Australia, the MSDN initiative is part of the national agenda to tap local talent abroad to contribute to the country.

Speaking at the launch attended by about 100 of Malaysia’s best minds in Australia, Muhyiddin said the global Malaysian scientific community could use the network to discuss general scientific and research issues and represent the voice of the Malaysian scientific community across the world.

They could also use the network to provide valuable collective ideas to improve scientific research and development in Malaysia, promote research collaborations and knowledge sharing, and provide guidance for young researchers, he said.

“We believe that this scientific diaspora network is a valuable source of talents that can be tapped to enhance knowledge and skills transfer, and in turn, strengthen scientific research in Malaysia.

Malaysian scientific diaspora network to connect Malaysian scientists worldwide



Why he will not return to Malaysia
  • Lim Teck Ghee
  • 2:04PM Aug 17, 2012

COMMENT We are reproducing below an excerpt from a former MCA insider who has left the country for good. The excerpt is from his letter responding to a request from his friend asking him to consider a return to Malaysia.

The excerpt provides a personal but important perspective of the role of non-Malay parties in the Barisan Nasional. It has been reproduced with the consent of the writer whose identity we’re withholding. This article provides the background for his disclosure.

These are excerpts taken from a letter by the MCA insider:

“From my experience with MCA and the people whom I had worked with in the party, I can only say that most of them, from the (former party presidents) San Choon, Koon Swan, Liong Sik (left), (former deputy president) Kim Sai, (former presidents) Ka Ting, Tee Keat and all the other people at federal and state level, know that the Chinese in Malaysia are not ever going to be in a position to influence the direction of how the country is to be governed, i.e. to say anything that affects major policies.
From the many, many sessions of central committee meetings and brainstorming, seminars, courses etc, the one main thing to emerge is to only defend or safeguard Chinese position in education and economic sectors. We’re down to TAR College (Tunku Abdul Rahman College), Utar (Universiti Tunku Abdul Rahman) and Chinese business interests which, sad to say, is playing to Umno whims and patronage… ‘macam’ (like) crony businesses.
There is no hope ever under Umno that Chinese position will improve because the overriding philosophy since May 13 is that non-Malay/ Muslims are to be assimilated (much like the Borgs in Star Trek).
MCA people know this and pretend to fight for the Chinese when they know they are only protecting their personal interests or financial gain, through Umno patronage.
To cut a long story short and to answer your question about going back, even if Penang booms further under DAP, the short answer is no.

I’ve burnt my bridges… It’s just too hard to ever hope that they will ever understand the meaning of a civil society, let alone try to forge one in the years ahead, even if (Pakatan Rakyat and) PKR take over Putrajaya… my prediction is that the worst is yet to come. I hope I’ll be proven wrong in my lifetime.

This article was posted on the Centre for Policy Initiatives’ website.

Why he will not return to Malaysia



Exodus from national schools, exodus from country
  • Stuck Elsewhere
  • 5:42PM Jul 31, 2012


We speak of the breakdown of our education system.

For us middle-class, it is already broken. Our parents sacrificed to get us an overseas tertiary education, and today, we have to start even earlier at primary education.

Education is the fundamental start of nation building, and as far as the X-Generation is concerned, it’s broken.

This means that despite all…………we have already arrived at the broken stage.

The working class may not be able to realise this, as they are most vulnerable to indoctrination and their options are limited.

But those in the middle and upper class have already realised this and the exodus is well under way.


Exodus from national schools, exodus from country



The good news is that, for those who wish to emigrate from Malaysia, Australia is much more open to you!

The bad news is that Malaysia will continue losing many of  its brightest and best…


Visas, Immigration and Refugees

Professionals and Other Skilled Migrants

What’s New? Recent Changes in General Skilled Migration

Changes to the Skilled Migration Pass Mark for SkillSelect Visas – 15 June 2012

The department, has announced a change to the points test pass mark for skilled migrants who submit an Expression of Interest through SkillSelect.

From 1 July 2012, the points test pass mark for points tested skilled migration visas invited through SkillSelect (subclasses 189, 190 and 489) will be 60 points.

Change to the skilled migration pass mark
15 Jun 2012

The pass mark for the new SkillSelect visa subclasses 189, 190 and 489 will be 60 points. Intending migrants will first need to submit an expression of interest (EOI) and be invited to make an application for these visas.

A Department of Immigration and Citizenship spokesman said the change to the pass mark was in the context of the series of reforms to the skilled migration program undertaken by the Australian Government since 2008.

“These reforms have ensured the skilled migration program is a responsive and demand driven program,” the spokesman said. “The cornerstone of this migration reform package will be the introduction of SkillSelect from July 1.”

SkillSelect is a new electronic service for managing the skilled migration program. Intending migrants without an employer sponsor wanting to live and work in Australia will need to complete an online EOI, then based on claims of their skills and attributes, will be allocated a score against the points test. SkillSelect will rank intending migrant’s scores against other EOIs.

The highest ranking migrants across a broad range of occupations may be invited to apply for a skilled visa.

“Delivery of a balanced migration program requires careful management,” the spokesman said. “SkillSelect will provide greater control over who can apply for a skilled visa and when they can apply.”

The previous pass mark was appropriate in the context of the skilled migration reforms, with a greater emphasis on employer-sponsored skilled migration and managing a growing pipeline of unsponsored skilled migration applications.

The pass mark for existing general skilled migration subclasses 175, 176, 475, 487, 885 and 886 will remain at 65 points.

The pass mark for the new SkillSelect visas will encourage a broader range of people with the skills and attributes needed in Australia to register their interest in migration.

Media Enquiries: National Communications Branch 02 6264 2244

Visa subclasses 885, 886 and 487 will remain open for new applicants until 1 January 2013. The points test pass mark for these visas will remain at 65 points.

More information about SkillSelect is available.
See: SkillSelect


Changes to the Skilled Migration Pass Mark for … skilled workers interested in migrating to Australia to … In 2011–12, the Department of Immigration and …… – Cached


Malaysia Chronicle

Monday, 18 June 2012 15:28

Work visas for foreign students in Australia: Final nail in coffin for ‘apartheid’ M’sia

Written by  Lim Guan Engincrease font size

According to recent news reports, foreign students in Australia will soon be eligible for work visas lasting two to four years after graduation from an Australian university under immigration rules to be introduced next year.

Australian Immigration Minister Chris Bowen was reported to have said that the expansion of the Skilled Graduate visa scheme would “help to enhance the competitiveness” of Australia’s A$18bil (RM57.5bil) inbound student industry.

This would potentially allow all 220,000 foreign university students in Australia to work in any job once they graduate.

Final nail in coffin

This new Australian work visa policy for graduates is almost set to be the final nail in the coffin for Malaysia’s 4Ds of Deficits, Debts, Deceits and brain Drain.

There are an estimated 20,000 – 30,000 Malaysian students in Australia, and when this new policy is implemented next year, our country can almost be assured of an exodus of talent as they will definitely stay on to work in Australia where they can enjoy greater salaries, greater freedom and greater prospects in both life and career.

Why is it that the Australian government is able to be so proactive and quick to grab opportunities while our own government is so lackadaisical and merely standing by as droves and droves of Malaysian talent continue to leak out of the country?

Glass ceiling

Last month, Talent Corp Malaysia, the agency tasked with the role of reversing the brain drain in our country, announced that their returning expert programme has managed to entice 680 Malaysian professionals to return last year, and 400 in the first four months of this year.

While the improvement is steady, the question arises whether a mere couple of hundred Malaysians returning can compare to the tens of thousands who will now inevitably make Australia their home after completing their studies there?

The fact is that until and unless we shatter the glass ceiling by addressing the fundamental flaws in our country with regards to its failed policies of rewarding mediocrity over meritocracy, we will never be able to attain the fabled high-income status that the Prime Minister is shouting about.

Coupled with the 3Ds of a spiralling national Deficit, which is set to reach RM59.7 billion after the supplementary budget tabled last week, a national Debt that is set to reach the RM500 billion mark by the end of this year excluding contingent liabilities, and the continuous Deceit by a government that is trying to pull a wool over our eyes, this latest policy announcement by the Australian government is almost certain to spark a massive brain Drain that will be the fourth and final D in Malaysia’s 4Ds dilemma.

Lim Guan Eng is the DAP secretary general and Penang Chief Minister


Among the Diaspora (Dispersion) are other races, too, including Malay. The writer of the next piece is a Malay.

Malaysia Chronicle

Monday, 18 June 2012 13:42

We won’t come home to vote…but we are with you!

Written by  Hussein Hamid

They may call us traitors to our own country. At times they tell us that Malaysia is better off if we stay wherever we are now – in London, Manchester, Moscow, Sydney, Paris or even Tokyo. For us Malays the vitriol is especially toxic because what we are today, they insist, is because of UMNO and their Ketuanan Melayu.

We are those who choose to live anywhere else but in Malaysia. We do so for various reasons but one thing unite us all – the search for a better life. Better then the one we left in Malaysia. Better then the one we have under an UMNO led Barisan Nasional and we hope an even better one for our children.

Our future is uncertain for we are Pendatangs in a different world, a different culture and a different mindset – but we are welcomed where we are! Nobody tells us that not being a Bumiputra will mean that we are not entitled to a discount when we want to buy a house nor will our children be discriminated against in education. Nobody tells us to write what our race, religion or even our gender is in any application forms we fill in. And nobody is remotely interested about your race or your religion in this new world that we are in.

For the ones left behind – they deserve better

So why, when we are thousands of kilometres away from Malaysia, why are we are still thinking of ‘home?’ Why are there activists amongst us that will disrupt Najib in London with shouts of “BERSIH?” Why are there many in Australia that plots the downfall of this UMNO led Barisan Nasional government? Why do we all want change?



We won’t come home to vote…but we are with you!


Since 2002
47,769 Malaysians gave up their citizenship
1 Singapore(40,624)
2 Australia (1,906)
3 Brunei (1,350)
4 United States (724)
5 Taiwan (711).

Malay Mail

47,769 Malaysians gave up citizenship since 2002 – Hishammuddin

Thursday, June 14, 2012 – 22:00

THE number of Malaysians who surrendered their citizenship since 2002 to May 2012 has increased to 47,769, Home Minister Datuk Seri Hishammuddin Tun Hussein told the Dewan Rakyat.

Hishammuddin said from the total, 40,624 of the Malaysians who gave up their citizenship have since become Singapore citizens, Australia (1,906), Brunei (1,350), United States (724) and Taiwan (711).

One of the main reason for giving up citizenship was because they are eligible to become permanent residents of another country due to marriage and to reduce such occurrences is beyond the ministry’s jurisdiction, he said in a written reply to a question by Er Teck Hwa (DAP-Bakri) in the Dewan Rakyat today.

47,769 Malaysians gave up citizenship since 2002 – Hishammuddin



Malay Mail

Malaysians urged to return home to help build nation

Wednesday, June 13, 2012 – 18:30

ABOUT 60 Malaysian students and professionals turned up at a lunch meeting at a five-star hotel here Tuesday to get an overview of the Malaysian government’s TalentCorp programme.

Malaysian Consul-General Dr Mohd Rameez Yahaya said Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Razak launched the ‘Returning Expert Programme’ to help Malaysia gain developed nation status by 2020.

“This is an excellent programme with several good incentives that would make it attractive and worthwhile for Malaysians abroad to return home to help our prime minister in his vision for a prosperous and happy Malaysia,” Rameez said.

He said there were hundreds of Malaysians living overseas who had qualification, expertise and the experience that were much needed in Malaysia.

Malaysians urged to return home to help build nation


Lim Kit Siang for Malaysia

Get real, Talent Corp

By Brandon Chan | May 16, 2011
The Malaysian Insider

MAY 16 — Johan Mahmood Merican must be breathing something different from the rest of us. In an interview with the Singapore Straits Times, he said that rhetoric over race will not impact the efforts of his organisation, Talent Corp, to lure Malaysians back home.

In essence, he said Malaysians living abroad will look at the policies of the Najib administration rather than be influenced by the chatter over race which has dominated the national discourse.

I suppose he has to say positive things but without realism this Talent Corp venture is doomed for failure. And the signs are that Johan is in la-la land.

The majority of the more than one million Malaysians did not leave the country because the tax rate is uncompetitive or because public transportation is woeful or because the national education system is dismal. They left because deep in their gut they did not believe they would get a fair shake in this country.

If Talent Corp did some research, it would realise that the spike in migration numbers was noticeable when race relations were at their worst and the sense of alienation among non-Malays over their position in this country. Does Johan even believe that Malaysians in Singapore, London and Melbourne are excited about the ETP, NKRA or whatever.


These national leaders do not condemn the race rhetoric and increasingly right-wing tone of Malaysia. In fact, they seem to encourage it, allowing Ibrahim Ali and the mainstream media to get away with insulting non-Malays and non-Muslims.

Does Johan actually believe that Malaysian Christians working abroad are interested in coming back now that Utusan Malaysia has started a campaign against Christianity?

So I think given his interview with the Singapore Straits Times, we can conclude that Talent Corp is doomed for failure.

* Brandon Chan reads The Malaysian Insider.

Get real, Talent Corp « Lim Kit… – Cached


Media statement by Lim Guan Eng in DAP Penang Headquarters in Penang on Wednesday, 20th October 2010: 

Failure of Talent Corporation to entice top Cambridge University law student Tan Zhongshan back to Malaysia a consequence of failed economic policies that stresses 100-storey Warisan Merdeka over human capital formation 

DAP wishes to extend our congratulations on behalf of Malaysians to Ipoh-born Tan Zhongshan for his outstanding achievement in becoming the top law student in the prestigious Cambridge University. However our pride at Tan’s success is tempered by the failure of our government to engage his services resulting in Tan heading to Singapore to join its Legal Service commission.

Tan’s departure from Malaysia is not surprising as he is part of the alarming brain drain that has swelled to almost tsunami levels. The number of Malaysian migrants rose by more than 100-fold in a 45-year period, from 9,576 Malaysians in 1960 to 1,489,168 Malaysians in 2005, according to the World Bank, which warned that a lack of human capital is a “critical constraint in Malaysia¡¯s ambition to become a high-income economy.”

Deputy Foreign Minister Senator A. Kohilan Pillay also said recently that 304,358 Malaysians had migrated from March 2008 till August 2009 compared with 139,696 Malaysians in 2007. In other words 1,942,798 mostly bright and talented Malaysians have left over the past 50 years since 1960 until August 2009.

The prime minister told Parliament this month that less than one per cent of 784,900 Malaysians working overseas have returned to the country during the past nine years with Singapore having the highest number of Malaysians with 303,828 people, followed by Australia with 78,858.

No longer are only non-Malays leaving the country for better employment opportunities, even Malays are doing the same. When I went to Dubai nearly 2 years ago, I was surprised to learn there were thousands of Malay professionals there who left Malaysia due to lack of promotional opportunities as they were not politically connected to top UMNO leaders.

In an effort to stop the hollowing out of Malaysia’s economy and lure back talents, the Najib administration has established the Talent Corporation (Talentcorp). Unfortunately, the failure of Talent Corporation to entice top Malaysian talents like Tan back to work in Malaysia is a consequence of failed economic policies that stresses 100-storey Warisan Merdeka over human capital formation.

Human talents is the new oil of the 21st century. The country that succeeds in training, retraining, retaining and attracting human talent will not just enjoy economic prosperity but be a world power. In this new paradigm, innovation is king.

Clearly stressing other considerations such as race or political connections over merits and needs not only drives away top talents, but also depresses standards and encourages a culture of mediocrity over excellence. The Malaysian government must also be bold in setting ability as the key ingredient for promotion and reward.

DAP does not see how Malaysia’s Talent Corporation will be able to succeed in attracting back 750,000 Malaysians working overseas, where only 1% has returned, if the federal government is more concerned about spending tens of billions on mega-projects that does not build human capital.

*Lim Guan Eng, DAP Secretary General & MP for Bagan

Failure of Talent Corporation to entice top Cambridge University law student Tan Zhongshan back to Malaysia a consequence of failed economic policies that stresses … – Cached


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3 Responses to The Malaysian Brain Drain: The Chinese are still leaving for other countries…

  1. Kirk says:

    For us who cannot afford to migrate there is one very tempting place we can migrate to – Penang – No need to give up my passport la.

  2. Pingback: Renouncing Malaysian citizenship | weehingthong

  3. Pingback: The Brain Drain in Malaysia continues… | weehingthong

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