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Malaysia - Waste Disposal

Due to Malaysia’s boom in industry and the influx of immigrants moving to the country for a better life in a warmer climate, there has been an increase in domestic waste and this has prompted the government to look at waste disposal management and the handling of such services.

Household Waste Disposal

Households in Malaysia dispose of their domestic waste in boxes stored outside. Recycling has only recently come into play and is now being widely introduced with the introduction of recycling areas in major cities. It is the responsibility of the resident to ensure that all household waste is gathered and placed in suitable containers ready for collection. Residents have to pay for household waste collection. Residential fees for one-off collections are around the 50 RM mark. There are companies which will provide boxes to sort the collection as you dispose and weekly collections are available. Most companies have their own lorries which will take pre-sorted waste disposal.

The two companies above are an example of waste disposal services which operate throughout major cities. Some companies will go to rural areas and this should be sourced by researching and asking in expat forums.

If you live in a residential building and pay a service fee for the maintenance of the building then it is likely that your waste disposal is collected and this is included in the price of your rent. The service management will arrange a communal area where you can store your waste disposal and there will be different boxes for different kinds of waste.


There are recycling centres in major cities. This is a drive-up process, whereby you take your recycling such as plastics and glass and place them into large drums which are then collected by the owners and deposited in landfills.

Because of the increase in waste disposal, the government has decided to tackle the problem. Recycling information notices have been issued to homes in major cities and people are signing up to programs and companies. The increase in companies who provide waste disposal services has been noticed and services now reach most areas across the country. Companies who once only collected from industrial outlets and now reached out to the domestic population and services are widely available.

There are recycling community centres throughout major cities. People who live alone can save money on services by taking their household waste to such centres. They are widely available within communities and in enclosed areas.

Hazardous Waste

Hazardous waste has to have careful handling and waste collections companies will usually be able to handle this for you. Using a company which provides a service for collection of hazardous waste is advisable. Most reputable companies will offer this service.


Sewerage in Malaysia is collected via piping into septic tanks which are maintained by government services. Property taxes contribute towards these services. Septic tank treatments are used to treat and then water sewerage is piped back to drinking reservoirs or piped back into the ground and then out to sea. Usually in expat areas which are primarily in major cities, sewerage is treated and then sent back to water reserves. Solid waste is treated and piped back to wetland areas. Intermediate treatments are required before dumping solid waste on wetland areas to avoid killing the plants and natural soils.


Waste and sewerage disposal is certainly by no means primitive in Malaysia and provision of services is becoming more widely available along with improvements in sewerage treatments.

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