Royal College of Surgeons in Ireland Coláiste Ríoga na Máinleá in Éirinn

Perdana University

Extending the Royal College of Surgeons in Ireland's long-standing educational involvement with Malaysia an undergraduate medical programme has been established in Kuala Lumpur in conjunction with Perdana University.

Established in 2011, RCSI, through its partnership with Perdana University (PU), Kuala Lumpur, licenses and delivers its five-year Undergraduate Medical Programmme, as part of the Academic Medical Centre for Excellence. The programme is fully accredited by both the Irish and Malaysian Medical Councils.

The programme has 300 students, of which the first full-cycle cohort graduated in September 2016 with degrees awarded by RCSI and the National University of Ireland. The curriculum is delivered largely by a team of RCSI specialist academic leads, who liaise with RCSI Dublin on a range of academic topics.

Perdana University-Royal College of Surgeons in Ireland (PU-RCSI) is part of a larger project – the Kuala Lumpur Academic Medical Centre (AMC) – a proposal to develop a centre of excellence for medicine in Malaysia.

Living in Kuala Lumpur

Perdana University (PU-RCSU) is located close to the capital city of Malaysia, Kuala Lumpur, providing a unique working and living environment for those energised by a dynamic and culturally diverse environment. Kuala Lumpur (commonly known simply as KL ), is a proud and diverse capital city, boasting gleaming skyscrapers, colonial architecture, charming locals, and a myriad natural attractions. Divided into numerous districts, its main hub is called the Golden Triangle which comprises Bukit Bintang, KLCC and Chinatown. Kuala Lumpur is widely recognised for numerous landmarks, including Petronas Twin Towers (the world’s tallest twin skyscrapers), Petaling Street flea market, and Batu Caves, which are over 400 million years old. The currency is the Malaysian Ringgit; 1 MYR = 0.21 EUR.

Perdana University map


Facts and figures

  • Population: Circa 1.76 million
  • Temperature (summer): 26-32C
  • Temperature (winter): 26-32C
  • Timezone: GMT +8









The official language of Malaysia is Bahasa Melayu, however Chinese dialects are widely spoken in Kuala Lumpur. English is very widely spoken and used for business communication; it is a compulsory language in schools and is therefore widely understood.


The temperature in Kuala Lumpur remains fairly consistent all year round; between 26-32C. There are two monsoon periods; from March to April and October to November. Most people prefer to visit Kuala Lumpur during the drier months of June and July, however even during monsoon season there are many activities to be enjoyed.

Transport and getting around

Cars drive on the left hand side of the road, and although it is possible to rent or buy a car, the roads in Kuala Lumpur can be chaotic at times. However, getting around Kuala Lumpur is relatively easy with many methods of public transport available. Taxi’s, buses and various rail systems are all on offer throughout the busy city. Pre-paid bus and rail tickets can also be purchased.

Food and dining

Kuala Lumpur has a large and diverse variety of restaurants and food available. Ranging from all-day hawker centres, food courts and coffee shops to fine-dining restaurants, there really is something to suit all tastes. Kuala Lumpur is well regarded for its wide array of local delicacies such as nasi lemak (rice cooked in coconut milk with anchovies and chili paste), roti canai (Indian flatbread), and bak kut teh (stewed pork ribs). There are plenty of international eateries and restaurants available for those who prefer more familiar food.

Religion and culture

Malaysia does not have one official religion, however over half of the population practices Islam. Malaysia is tolerant of other faiths and expats are not expected to adhere to their Islamic traditions, however, respect should be shown towards local customs and practices, particularly during holy times, such as Ramadan. Kuala Lumpur is a hub for cultural activities and events in Malaysia. A melting pot of cultures and traditions, the city is a modern and cosmopolitan capital with the three dominant ethnicities – Malays, Chinese and Indians – that form the majority of Malaysia’s population.


Malaysia has excellent healthcare facilities, particular in Kuala Lumpur. There is no shortage of hospitals (both public and private) and excellent doctors. Both public and private hospitals provide high-quality medical services, with modern technology and very highly skilled doctors. There are also many dentists, pharmacies and other healthcare services widely available in Kuala Lumpur.


Kuala Lumpur has over 60 shopping centres and is well renowned as the retail and fashion hub of Malaysia. Generally speaking, you can buy just about anything you want in Kuala Lumpur. There are also markets in the city where locally manufactured products such as crafts, textiles and fabrics can be purchased.

Entertainment, sports and family clubs

There are a number of sports, fitness and social clubs in Kuala Lumpur where good facilities are available for a wide range of activities. For additional information on some of these, please visit the following links:
Cinemas showing current films can be found in many of the shopping cinemas in Kuala Lumpur. There are numerous bars, night clubs and discotheques in the city.


Useful links

Relocating to Kuala Lumpur

As is the case when relocating to any new location, there is a lot to consider when relocating to Kuala Lumpur – where to live, schools, cost of living, visas, etc. The RCSI International Talent team are available to assist with providing detailed information on all aspects of relocating, from the logistics of flying out, transporting personal effects and other support services available. A brief overview on some aspects of relocating to Kuala Lumpur can be found below.


Kuala Lumpur has accommodation options to suit many tastes and budget, be it an apartment, a condo or a house. The first factor to consider is the preferred location of a property. Unlike other cities, there are no large expat compounds in Kuala Lumpur. Expats tend to live where they find most suitable accommodation for them, although some areas in Kuala Lumpur are more popular than others.


With the increase of the expat population, the number of international schools in Kuala Lumpur has also increased. Education in Kuala Lumpur is of a high standard, and there are many options for different budgets. It is very common that schools provide dining facilities for breakfasts and lunches for students. While there are a number of schools for expats to choose from, classes fill up quickly so registration should be completed as early as possible.

Cost of living

The cost of living in Malaysia is relatively low in comparison to some of its neighboring countries, such as Singapore. As with relocating to any destination, the cost of living in Kuala Lumpur can vary depending on the lifestyle one chooses to lead. Food costs in Kuala Lumpur are generally reasonable, particularly if purchasing local produce. Restaurants are generally affordable, however local markets serving good quality street food are plentiful and very affordable.
Litre of milk  MYR 8  €1.72 
Dozen eggs MYR 7 €1.50
Loaf of bread MYR 2.90 €0.62
Three course meal (mid-range restaurant) MYR 117 €25
Cappuccino MYR 14 €2.99 
Bottle of beer in a pub MYR 21 €4.50
Petrol/gas (per litre) MYR 1.90 €0.40


Useful links


Working in Kuala Lumpur

As an RCSI international employee, there are many support services available when relocating to Kuala Lumpur. RCSI will work collaboratively with Perdana University to ensure all necessary visas, work authorisation paperwork is arranged.

Work environment

Although the expat population is increasing in Kuala Lumpur, they are encouraged to familiarise themselves with local Malaysian customs and practices. Business hours are generally eight hours a day, five days a week and English is widely used to communicate in business. The business dress code is generally formal and modest, and both men and woman should dress conservatively.

Work authorisations and visas

RCSI in Dublin work collaboratively with Perdana University to ensure all necessary arrangements of work authorisations and visas for all RCSI international employees. RCSI aim to have all appropriate documentation in place in advance of arrival to Kuala Lumpur.


Malaysia has a relatively low income tax rate and few other taxes. This lower tax structure represents a significant benefit of working in Malaysia for expats.


In order to open a bank account in Kuala Lumpur, expats must have a valid work permit – this will be arranged in advance of relocation. An element of paperwork will be required, with which assistance will also be provided. There are several international banks in operation in the Kuala Lumpur. Banks such as HSBC and Bank of America have some branches in the city and using one of these may make it easier if you wish to transfer money back to an account in your country of origin.


Useful links

Visit the Perdana University website