During his wind-up speech at the PKR National Congress, Prime Minister Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim announced that travellers from selected countries which include Turkiye, Jordan, China and India, can enjoy 30 days of visa-free travel to Malaysia, starting from 1 December 2023.
This is being done in order to help increase the tourism potential from these select countries into Malaysia. Other countries that are involved in this via-free facility include Saudi Arabia, Qatar, United Arab Emirates, Bahrain, Kuwait, Iraq, and Iran.
50 years of diplomatic ties with China
Anwar mentioned that this move is also a celebration of 50 years of diplomatic relations with China.
In 2023, there were 9.16 million tourist arrivals in Malaysia between January and June this year, with 498,540 from China and 283,885 from India.
While travellers can come and go without a visa during this period, they will still be subject to security screenings. Those with criminal records or pose risk of violence will not be allowed to enter.
Further details regarding this visa-free facility will be announced soon by Home Minister Datuk Seri Saifuddin Nasution Ismail.
Malaysians can also enter China without a visa from Dec 1
Recently, China has also made the announcement that it will begin trialling visa-free travel for citizens from France, Germany, Italy, the Netherlands, Spain and Malaysia for a year.
Anwar noted that Malaysia is currently the only Asian country that China has afforded this opportunity to. It was also mentioned that the highest number of tourists to Malaysia in the Asean region were from Singapore and Indonesia, while the highest outside of this region was from China.