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How to Obtain a Development Order in Malaysia?

How to Obtain a Development Order in Malaysia

In Malaysia, development order or planning permission (kebenaran merancang) is a vital aspect and prerequisite in the development control process. The control process can be categorised into three stages, namely: the pre-construction stage, the construction stage, and the post-construction stage.

Feeling lost? Fret not; we’re here to guide you through the definition of development order, its significance, and the procedures needed to obtain a development order in order to ensure an orderly, sustainable, and systematic development.

What is Development Order?

As mentioned above, there are three stages of development. Planning permission is in the pre-construction stage. Many often perceive it as the most essential stage, as it marks the beginning of development.

Federal Territory (Planning) Act 1982 (Act 267) is the planning law adopted by the Federal Territories of Malaysia. Local Planning Authorities (LPA) such as Perbadanan Putrajaya, Perbadanan Labuan and Kuala Lumpur City Hall adopt Act 267, including the planning permission process, unlike other States of Peninsular Malaysia that adopt Act 172.

As stipulated in Subsection 2(1) of Act 267, development order issued under this Act will grant planning permission with or without conditions applied, to carry out development. Only the LPA of Federal Territories issues it, which enables specific development at a particular site. The LPA of Federal Territories typically uses the term ‘development order’.

To put it briefly, the development order is the written consent of the LPA. It is compulsory after one obtains the land conversion approval and before the development of any building or settlement. If one has commenced any development without acquiring a development order, they are regarded to have breached the law.

Moreover, developers without planning permission can be convicted under Section 27 and Section 28 of Act 267. The penalties are in accordance with Subsection 26(1), which entails a fine not exceeding RM50,000. In the case of a continuing offence, it may extend to RM500 for every day the offence continues after conviction.

What is Considered as ‘Development’?

Subsection 2(1) of the Federal Territory (Planning) Act 1982 defined the term ‘development’ as the carrying out of any building, engineering, mining, industrial or other similar operation in, on, or under land, the making of any material change in the use of any land or building or any part thereof, or the subdivision or amalgamation of lands.

Thus, one can categorise the development in Malaysia into operational work, material change of use, and aspects in land administration.

Operational work– Building
– Engineering
– Earthwork
– Mining
– Industrial
Material change of use– Physical
– Substantial
– Relevant
Aspect in land administration– Conversion of use
– Change of conditions
– Subdivision
– Amalgamation
– Partitioning

Why is it Necessary?

The need for development order is spelt out under Section 19 to Section 30 of Part IV – Planning Control, Act 267. Development order is the process of permitting any activity on land and buildings or allowing any change in the use of land and buildings.

It is to ensure that all relevant plans and documents comply with rules and legislations, effectively control the development of land and buildings, and execute the approved plan accordingly.

Furthermore, it’s a must to have proper planning through an excellent town planning process in order to mitigate risk and failures, facilitate economic and social development, enhance better working environment and quality of living, as well as encourage the people’s general welfare.

Process and Procedure

Subsection 20(1A) of Act 267 provides that no person shall commence, undertake or carry out any development irrespective of whether or not the development is in conformity with the development plan unless a development order granting planning permission in respect of the development has been issued to him under this Act.

As such, this act requires one to apply for planning permission. To do so, an applicant needs to attach documents such as Form A, application fee, layout plan, quit rent receipt, JPB/KP forms, land title document and address of adjoining landowners, proposed development report (LCP), survey certified plan and many more

Process and Procedure

Applicants should submit their application forms to the One Stop Centre (OSC). They will assist and advise the applicants to make corrections, if deemed necessary, before handing the applications for tabling to the committee for consideration. OSC is a planning system’s delivery mechanism designed to expedite the application process norms through its policies and planning practices.

Therefore, a certified consultant, such as PEQ Consult, is needed to provide comprehensive consultation to ensure a smooth process and deliver the best possible outcome. The consultant or town planner will advise applicants not only on the matters of application but also on various alternative developments, in line with the National Land Code, Land Acquisition Act, Street, Drainage and Building Act, and Environmental Quality Act. This also extends to other by-laws of the land.

In Conclusion

All in all, development order is an important process in any development. Hence, employing a consultant with extensive industry experience is a must to deter future complexities and inappropriate developments. Fortunately, PEQ Consult is always ready to serve you with the best town planning services in the market.


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