Filming in Sarawak – How to Apply

Photo Credit to Kyle Loftus

Introduction

Sarawak is autonomous when it comes to immigration and visa policies. Therefore, unless you are taking photographs and video for purely personal “home” use, you would need to apply for a Professional Visit Pass (PVP) for Filming in Sarawak.

Link to the necessary documents are as following

SAMPLE DOCUMENTS HERE

The minimum time needed for the approval process from the time we have received and reviewed all the needed documents, is usually 6 to 8 weeks. We recommend to start the application process as early as possible.

In the whole of Malaysia, Sarawak takes the most time for applying for these PVP compared to other states in Malaysia. Other states in Malaysia takes up about one week to a month.

Getting started

PVP for Filming are issued by the Office of the Premier of Sarawak. The approval is required for all Malaysians (Non Sarawakians) and Foreigners to obtain the Professional Visit Pass to carry out filming work in Sarawak.  All requests must be sent to Office of the Premier of Sarawak for approval.

Production companies need write officially using company’s letter head to

Director,

Immigration and Labour Management Unit

Office of the Premier of Sarawak,

Level 8, Wisma Bapa Malaysia, Petra Jaya, 93502 Kuching, Sarawak

Tel: +6082 319081 (2109) / +6082 444108 Fax: +6082 440550

Attn: Cik Nur Izzatul Yasmin (nurizzys@sarawak.gov.my)

Documents Required

Photo by Karen Lau00e5rk Boshoff on Pexels.com

Please find below the filming requirements and the templates given together with the necessary documents to support the application for filming in Sarawak. 

  1. Crew List 
  2. Equipment List
  3. Passport Copy (color, soft copy) – West Malaysia, Labuan, Sabah 
  4. IC copy (Color, Soft copy, front/back) – Sarawak Only (13, 52, 59)
  5. Production Company Profile
  6. Program & Synopsis (No storyboard allowed)
  7. Itinerary of the shooting (indicate date and location) 
  8. Location list 
  9. Supporting Letter from TV Station (TVS, Astro, RTM, BBC, etc..)
  10. Cover letter to The Office of The Premier of Sarawak  using the Production Company letterhead

PLEASE MAKE SURE ALL DOCUMENTS ARE COMPLETE BEFORE SUBMITTING

Once documents are submitted the Premier Office will usually arrange for an online interview

Interview

Photo by Kampus Production on Pexels.com

This interview session is part of the screening process imposed by the Office of The Premier of Sarawak. The interview usually take about 30 minutes and is just a run through with the production company on the project. The questions asked are based on the documents submitted and is a two way conversation. The Production Company applying for the Professional Visit Pass can also seek clarification during the interview.

What Next?

Photo by Karolina Grabowska on Pexels.com

SECURITY DEPOSIT FEES 

A ‘Security Deposit’ will be imposed and will be mentioned in the first letter of response by the Office of the Premier of Sarawak (CMO) after the interview session with the CMO’s. It is advisable for you to hold your payment of Security Deposit until the letter of instruction is released. 

Details of Security Deposit: 

  1. Malaysian based company      : RM 2,000.00
  2. Foreign based company           : RM 5,000.00

     Payment is to be made to: KERAJAAN NEGERI SARAWAK by Local Bank Draft or Malaysia Postal Order (Crossed) at the Sarawak State Treasury,Level 4, UTC Sarawak, Jalan Bukit Mata, 93100 Kuching, Sarawak as stated below. This is to be done once you have received the instruction letter from the Office of the Premier of Sarawak.  

           Jabatan: Chief Minister’s Department

           PTJ Pemungut : 2801001

           Kredit ke Kod Akaun: A28000000054101000000

Please make sure that in the receipt, the payment received is made to your production company name. Also the original receipt is required when you have completed the filming and for you to request for the Security Deposit refund.

SARAWAK IMMIGRATION 

The production crew need to obtain their Professional Visit Pass (PVP) or Pas Lawatan Ikthisas at Sarawak Immigration Department (VISA/PASS Section, 2nd Floor, Bangunan Sultan Iskandar, Jalan Simpang 3, Kuching) and there will be fees involved in this process.

Details on PVP or Pas Lawatan Ikhtisas:

  1. Professional Visit Pass – RM90.00 each passport (Only for foreign crew)
  2. No Charges – For West Malaysia & Sabah only 

Sarawak Forestry Corporation

Mulu National Park

For production planning to do filming at the National Parks or Wildlife Centre, you may need to write to the Controller of Sarawak Forestry Corporation. 

The address:

Controller, Sarawak Forestry Corporation

Nature Conservation & Constitution Division 

Lot 218, KCLD, Jalan Tapang, Kota Sentosa, 93250, Kuching, Sarawak 

Contact Person: Ahdzyzdha binti Razali (ahdzyzdhar@sarawakforestry.com)

SFC will imposed RM1,000 for filming fee, payment to be made at National Park during filming (please keep the original receipt, if shooting more than one National Park)

*note: for Sarawak based company, production can write on directly to SFC Office, providing with all support letter from the TV Station

Local Assistance

Local Sarawak based production companies are able to assist in the above application.

Good luck and hope this article helps.

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