Malaysia Fast Facts

malaysia fact file Kota Kinabalu, Malaysia Climate in Malaysia

Population: 30,949,962

Capital City: Kuala Lumpur

Climate: Tropical; annual southwest (April to October) and northeast (October to February) monsoons

Time Zone: GMT +8

Language: Bahasa Malaysia

Country Code: 60

Coastline: 4,675km

The Exotic, Modern Paradise

Conjuring up all the mysteries of Asia, Malaysia is a former British colony that remains as colorful as ever. Beyond the lofty skyscrapers of the capital, Kuala Lumpur, its dramatic canvas is embroidered with tropical beaches, mountains, dense rainforest, and vividly green tea plantations.

Along with foreign expats from around the globe, the country is home to Malay Malays, Chinese Malays, Hindu Malays, and Sikh Malays. And there are still traces of the British influence. Throughout the Muslim world, there’s probably no more liberal country.

Malaysia has great infrastructure and foreigners are allowed to own properties freehold, has no inheritance tax, and places no tax on income repatriated from overseas.

There is no capital gains tax on equities either, and property sold in the fifth year will incur only 5% capital gains tax.

Malaysia also has a fascinating history. The UNESCO heritage city of Malacca was conquered by the Portuguese in 1511, and the first Englishman to set foot on a beach on the Island of Penang (also UNESCO listed) did so in 1593.

Malaysia’s first UNESCO heritage site, Kota Kinabalu Park, has more than 4,500 species of flora and fauna, including 326 birds and over 100 different mammals. It will literally take your breath away.

When you sprinkle the stunning beaches of Langkawi, Pankor, and Tioman Island into the mix, and then throw in unbeatable healthcare at super low prices, you have a country like no other in Asia. The fact that most Malaysians also speak English is just the icing on the cake.

Find Out More From Our Malaysia Correspondent

From the Archives of Malaysia

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Cost of Living in Malaysia

Cost of Living in Malaysia

By |
May 20, 2019

When looking for a place to retire, cost of living is the first concern for a lot of people. Many are on a fixed budget and want to live in a place that has all the comforts of home without the same high costs. Penang, an island just off Malaysia’s west coast, is that place. On $2,500 a month, a couple can live extremely well. Rent in a modern highrise with a pool, a gym, and security guards will cost about $750 to $800. That price will get you a modern 2,300-square-foot condo with three bedrooms, three bathrooms and a balcony overlooking the ocean. If you don't care to live with a view or by the beach, you can rent a two- or three-bedroom place for about $550 to $650, which means you could easily live on $2,000 a month.