Malaysia is to target technological talent with a brand new work visa for freelancers and experts specializing in cryptotechnology. Referred to by some as a “Blockchain Visa”, the government hopes that the availability of this new travel authorization will facilitate the number of businesses working directly with blockchain infrastructure and accelerate the country’s burgeoning technology sector.
At present, it’s essential to hold a valid Malaysia eVisa if you are traveling to the nation for up to 30 days from India, China, Pakistan and 7 other countries around the world. There is an option of either a multi-entry or a single entry visa which is applied for via an online visa application form prior to travel. It can be approved and received in as little as 2 working days and is received directly to a personal email inbox.
The new visa being discussed will also be an eVisa. However, rather than operating as a tourist visa it will be aimed at business people working in the technology sector and will make it possible for talent in the field of cryptotechnology to enter the country more flexibly.
How the New Blockchain Visa Will Work
- Program: Digital Freelancer Program
- Who it is for: Experts in blockchain (expected to expand in the future)
- How long it will be valid for: Up to 12 months
- What it is for: Allowing organizations to fill gaps in blockchain expertise
- Where to apply for the visa: Online
As part of the Malaysian government’s long term technology and communication investment program (referred to sometimes as the Multimedia Super Corridor), the new eVisa will make it much easier for the interchange of blockchain technical knowledge between borders. It will be the first Southeast Asian country to introduce such a scheme for this technology.
It will be officially titled the Digital Freelancer program and will run as part of the country’s Professional Visit Pass (PVP) system, which allows representatives of overseas companies with specialized skills and qualifications to enter to provide services or undergo further training. This new program is to be launched in collaboration with Singapore blockchain organization the NEM Foundation and Estonian jobs platform Jobbatical, which will provide information about the needs of the sector to the government and provide technological support.
“We will be kicking it (the program) off starting with blockchain jobs. The number of visas to be issued depends on the projects that will be run by blockchain companies in Malaysia,” Malaysia Digital Economy Corporation (MDEC) Growth Ecosystem Development Vice-President Norhizam Abdul Kadir commented to local media sources.
Similarly to other PVP programs, the visa itself will allow overseas visitors with blockchain expertise to enter the country for periods of up to 12 months to offer training or provide business services to Malaysian companies. The availability of the visa will be based on the number of available blockchain openings in the country and is hoped to fill any gaps in this expertise within companies and encourage talent into the nation that will help upskill the sector as a whole.
How Blockchain Technology Works
Blockchain is a cutting edge technology which can be used to store data and transactional information in a safe, secure, encrypted fashion. It takes blocks of individual data from a transaction record and stores it using a cryptographic chain. It is a technology which is of great interest to those working in finance, government policy, and law the world over.
This tech does away with third-party organizations which work as intermediaries, such as banks, to notarise transactions and greatly reduces the risk of fraud in the process. This is also the same sort of technology that drives cryptocurrencies such as Bitcoin, as the blockchain itself, operates as an incorruptible record of all exchanges of value made.
The technology is generating a lot of interest in the world of technology due to its many potential uses in the trade and record-keeping. Therefore the Malaysian government’s new scheme intends to attract precisely that understanding and knowledge base to the country to ensure that the country remains at the forefront of innovation and development in this area. The country already uses blockchain technology to track its food supply chain and is looking into expanding this into its energy and agriculture activities as well.
Malaysia’s commitment to technological innovation with this new scheme is likely to see a larger influx of blockchain talent entering the country over the coming months and years. Remember, if you’re traveling to Malaysia as a tourist, be sure to check if an eVisa is required and if you meet the necessary entry requirements so you can quickly and easily be ready to travel.