KDN: Xpats gateway offers easier, faster work pass application
25 Jul 2023
The Xpats Gateway, launched on June 15, is one of the government’s initiatives to make the application process for expatriate work pass more efficient, easy and faster.
Home Ministry (KDN) Deputy Secretary-General (Policy and Control) Dr Abdul Gapar Abu Bakar said the gateway brings together approval and regulatory agencies relating to expatriate employment under one platform, proving an effective and faster end-to-end process.
He said companies hiring expatriates can access the Xpats Gateway on the website esd.imi.gov.my to obtain support letters from the relevant agencies and subsequently obtain approval for expatriate work passes through the same platform.
“Expatriate applications will be divided into two tracks; the fast track, which takes five working days; and the normal track, which takes 15 working days, starting from the time a complete application is received in the system until the application decision is given and the work pass is issued.
“Prior to this, companies had to submit applications to their respective regulatory agencies first to obtain support letters before proceeding with the application to approval agencies. This process used to take between two to four months for approval,” he said during an exclusive interview with Bernama recently.
Abdul Gapar said applying companies would also be categorised based on a tiering system where companies with a good reputation, prominent position, high capital, and no violations under any Acts will be placed in Tier 1 and 2, and will go through the fast track.
“Sectors categorised by approval agencies/regulatory bodies as critical, based on the company’s projects, investment value, skills, niche technologies, and new industries, will also go through the fast track, while other companies will follow the normal track,” he explained.
Abdul Gapar said that the initiative is a collective commitment from various ministries and agencies led by the Ministry of Economy and coordinated by the Malaysia Productivity Corporation (MPC).
“The Xpats Gateway initiative represents the government’s commitment to digitalise public services while facilitating the industrial sector in the ease of doing business.
“The KDN is responsible for expatriate-related policies, and the Immigration Department is responsible for issuing passes to expatriates, along with other relevant ministries and agencies involved in this initiative,” he said.
Abdul Gapar said all manual processes practised before have been replaced with an online system, resulting in significant savings in terms of paper and time, as well as reducing the risk of document misplacement.
“This initiative also enhances the transparency of the process, as everything is conducted online. Only complete applications will be processed and evaluated, and only those with support letters from agencies will proceed to the next stage for expatriate approval and work pass issuance,” he said.
He also said more agencies are expected to be involved in the second phase of the Xpats Gateway implementation, starting on Aug 15, which will benefit a broader range of sectors.
“I hope the implementation of this initiative will meet the needs and requirements of the industries involved in facilitating the application process to obtain approval for expatriate entry into our country, ultimately boosting confidence among foreign investors to come and invest in Malaysia.
“The influx of foreign investments into the country is crucial for economic recovery post-COVID-19 and will further support the local economy as numerous job opportunities will be offered to the locals,” he added.