PETALING JAYA: Penang has made it to a US-based publication's list of eight great places for foreigners to retire in.
George Town was the only Asian destination to be included with Medellin (Colombia), Dubrovnik (Croatia), Salinas (Ecuador), Bilbao (Spain), Coronado (Panama), Galway (Ireland) and Tlaxcala (Mexico).
Kiplinger, a United States-based personal finance and business forecasting publication, names access to healthcare, the low cost of living as well as the success of the Malaysia My Second Home (MM2H) programme as George Town's main attractions for retirees.
With Malaysia being in the lowest tier in the Global Retirement Index, it said that an American couple could get along extremely well with just RM4,650 a month.
“British colonialism on the cheap,” it said, alluding to the cultural richness of Penang's capital.
In the article, it highlighted George Town's charm as a Unesco World Heritage site, intriguing architecture and street food. It noted that English was widely spoken on the island.
Tourism director-general Mirza Mohammad Taiyab Beg was pleased but not surprised with the ranking.
“Malaysia has all the attributes of a popular destination for retirees.”
He added that the warm tropical climate and low living costs were key.