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Poll Reveals Over 60% Of Malaysians Want To Leave The Country For Good, Sadly Here’s Why


Ft Reddit Final
Source:KLIA2.Info & ExpatGO

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“I don’t want to dislike this country – but with all, that’s going on, how can I not?”

With Malaysia’s national day coming up, we would think that most Malaysians would be feeling extra patriotic and proud of our nation.

However perhaps due to factors such as the country’s poor handling of the Covid-19 situation, the unstable political scene as well as the lack of opportunities for Malaysians, many have ‘indicated’ their desire to eventually leave the country and emigrate elsewhere permanently.



A Reddit poll on the r/Malaysia subreddit created by user u/brandonczw on 26 August, asked Malaysians to vote on whether or not they wish to remain in Malaysia for the long term and asked users to reveal the reasons for their choices.

In the poll’s introduction, the user says, “I’m curious to see how many of you are happy living here and whether you have plans for immigration to other countries!”

They added, “For those choosing 3 & 4, a brief explanation or just a comment on where you’d like to move to would be great! And also those who have already immigrated to other countries, I’d love to hear your story!”

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The poll which ended yesterday, 29 August garnered over 3,200 votes and 236 comments. It included four options for users to pick from which were:

  1. “I am very happy here, and do not want to immigrate at all.”
  2. “I am happy here and have thought of it, but most likely won’t.”
  3. “I am fine here, but would still like to immigrate anyway, if possible.”
  4. “I am unhappy here and will definitely immigrate.”

Screenshot 90 1


The results indicated that 1,400 participants voted for the third option whilst 596 voted for the fourth. When combined, this would equal to 62% of participants who have expressed their desire to leave the country permanently.

Another thing that should be noted is the fact that only 294 participants have said that they are very happy here and have no intention or have never thought of leaving the country. This equates to 9% of all participants.


Reasons for leaving and for wanting to leave

Many participants have opted to share their reasons for wanting to leave Malaysia, whilst some of those who have left reflected on the reasons for their departure. The main reasons include issues such as the political situation, racial discrimination, lack of career advancement opportunities and many more.

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One user explained that they had already left for the US for college and is now residing in Canada.

“I don’t dislike this country but am just unhappy with the direction the country is going. Growing up I remember waving the Jalur Gemilang and handing in my sketches of our national cars during the National Day celebration. My dad would drive around with the flag on his car. It was always a proud moment,” they said.

“I haven’t heard my dad talk about wanting to fly the flag on his car on Hari Kebangsaan. These days, it’s mostly, I’m tired of the politics in this country or please don’t come back.”

Another commenter agreed with the user and said that “The people are suffering horribly because of the government’s incompetency.”

“I don’t want to dislike this country – but with all that’s going on, how can I not?”

They also said, “This country makes me feel like I don’t even belong here.”

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Some commenters explained that although they are fine with staying in the country, they hope that their future children can grow up in a better environment.

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One user said that “Even though this country has a lot of problems and they seem to be getting worse, I’m somewhat happy here and I don’t want to migrate because I love my country.”

“I just wished she’d love me back as much as I love her.”


Screenshot 94


Amongst all of the problems, one that is very worrying is Malaysia’s “brain drain” which is the migration of talent across borders. According to the World Bank’s report on 2011, titled ‘Malaysia Economic Monitor: Brain Drain’, brain drain touches the core of Malaysia’s aspiration to become a high-income nation.

“For Malaysia to stand success in its journey to high income, it will need to develop, attract and retain talent. Malaysia needs talent, but talent seems to be leaving.”

The report states that country’s brain drain is intense relative to a narrow skill base, with one out of ten graduates migrated in 2000 which is twice the world average.

Rsz Traveller


Furthermore, a January 2017 survey conducted by Malaysia’s CIMB Foundation found that 15.5% of Malays, 48.8% of Chinese Malaysians and 37.3% of Indian Malaysians reported a stronger than average desire to emigrate from the country.

The desire to leave was higher among those who had completed their secondary or tertiary education: 17.3% of Malays, 52.6% of Chinese Malaysians and 42% of Indian Malaysians said the survey.

However, according to statistics regarding human flight and brain drain provided by the Global Economy, Malaysia’s brain drain is slightly lower than average.

The data ranks countries based on the level of human displacement with an index score of 0 (low) to 10 (high), and as of 2021, Malaysia ranks at 114 with a 4.50 score whilst the average amongst the 173 countries was 5.25 index points.

Which option would you have voted for and why? Let us know in the comments.


Also read: “It’s driving us out!” Expats Criticise Govt’s Drastic Changes To ‘Malaysia My Second Home’ Rules

Ft Expat 3

Source: WTTC
Source: Reddit
Source: Reddit
Source: Reddit
Source: Reddit
Source: Reddit
Source: Reddit
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Source: Reddit
Source: MITI

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