Helping out 'stuck' foreign students in Malaysia

Helping out 'stuck' foreign students in Malaysia
Jovial conversation: Kamalanathan (centre) and The Star group managing director and chief executive officer Datuk Seri Wong Chun Wai (fourth from left) talking to student Tan Shao Wen (fifth from left) on his study plans at the 26th Star Education Fair at the Kuala Lumpur Convention Centre.

KUALA LUMPUR - Foreign students who are "stuck" in the country because their passports are being held for the processing of student visas can directly appeal for help from Deputy Education Minister P. Kamalanathan.

A high number of foreign students have sought help from The Star to highlight their plight after waiting for months for their visas.

Some of these students say they cannot return home for the holidays due to inordinate delays by Education Malaysia Global Services (EMGS).

"Get in touch with me with your passport details so I can look into the matter.

"There is a solution for everything - we don't want to be the reason for students to be kept away from their families during the festive season," he said after opening the 26th Star Education Fair.

Kamalanathan said students with such passport woes can email him at

The EMGS is a one-stop centre for foreign student enrolment that was set up by the then Higher Education Ministry (now merged with the Education Ministry) last year.

Kamalanathan said the ministry had in place a two-year moratorium on licences given out to institutions to admit foreign students in order to weed out rogue colleges.

"Don't think that we have not been doing anything for these two years. We are ironing out all these issues to make sure that when the ministry starts issuing licen­ces again in 2015, this problem will be resolved.

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