List of Malaysians of Chinese descent

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This is a list of notable Malaysians of Chinese origin, including original immigrants who obtained Malaysian citizenship and their Malaysian descendants. Entries on this list are demonstrably notable by having a linked current article or reliable sources as footnotes against the name to verify they are notable and define themselves either full or partial Chinese, whose ethnic origin lie in China.

This list also includes emigrant Malaysians of Chinese origin and could be taken as a list of famous Malaysians of Chinese origin.




Fine arts[edit]

  • Yong Mun Sen (杨曼生; 1896–1962) –-Kuching born Penangite watercolorist and Malaysian artist; "father of Malaysian painting"; one of the founders of Nanyang Academy of Fine Arts or NAFA, Singapore, Penang Art Society[1]
  • C. N. Liew (born 1975) – K.L.-born artist who took the traditional artform of calligraphy to a whole new dimension with his creation of Surrealligraphy
  • Chang Fee Ming (born 1959) – Terengganu-born watercolor painter
  • Red Hong Yi - Sabah-born artist and architectural designer[2]
  • Tang Tuck Kan (鄧德根; 1934-2012)- Pioneer Artist of Malaysian Modern Art Movement in the 60s and 70s.



Beauty pageant titleholders[edit]



Medicine, science and technology[edit]

  • Lim Boon Keng (1868–1957) – first Malayan to receive a Queen's Scholarship, gained admission to the University of Edinburgh and graduated in 1892 with a first class honours degree in medicine
  • Wu Lien-teh (伍连德) (1879–1960) – renowned plague fighter and pioneer in the modernization of China's public health system; first medical student of Chinese descent to study at University of Cambridge in 1896, after winning the Queen's Scholarship held in Singapore; first Malaysian Chinese nominated to receive a Nobel Prize in Medicine, in 1935[6]
  • Gu Hongming - Penang-born scholar and famous professor in Peking University firstly established
  • Pua Khein-Seng (潘建成) – CEO of Phison Electronics Corporation, arguably one of the inventors of the USB flash drive[7]
  • Cheah Ming Tatt – biologist specializing in immunology and genetics, a recipient of Howard Hughes Medical Institute's Future Scientists Fellowship for his work on RNA splicing
  • Shu Jie Lam - Research Chemist at University of Melbourne



Early history[edit]

Malaysian Chinese Association[edit]

Democratic Action Party[edit]

Parti Gerakan Rakyat Malaysia[edit]

People's Justice Party[edit]

Pan-Malaysian Islamic Party[edit]

  • Anuar Tan Abdullah @ Tan Teng Loon - current Kelantan state assemblyman for Kota Lama

National Trust Party[edit]

  • Hu Pang Chaw - AMANAH national central committee, former PAS supporter club founder
  • Tan Seng Toh - Perak AMANAH state vice-chairman

Sarawak United Peoples' Party[edit]

United Bumiputera Heritage Party[edit]

Progressive Democratic Party[edit]

Sabah Heritage Party[edit]

United Sabah Party[edit]


  • Tan Sri Datuk Chong Kah Kiat – 13th Chief Minister of Sabah, former president of the Liberal Democratic Party (LDP)
  • Ding Kuong Hiing – former Member of the Malaysian Parliament for the Sarikei, Sarawak (from 2008 to 2013)
  • Hee Yit Foong - former Perak state assemblywoman for Jelapang
  • Tan Tee Beng – former Member of the Malaysian Parliament for Nibong Tebal, Penang
  • Wee Choo Keong – former Member of the Malaysian Parliament for Wangsa Maju, Kuala Lumpur (from 2008 to 2013)
  • James Wong Kim Min – first Deputy Chief Minister of Sarawak; president of the Sarawak National Party (SNAP)
  • Khaw Boon Wan – serving as the Coordinating Minister for Infrastructure and the Minister for Transport in Singapore since 2015
  • Lee Bee Wah – serving as Member of Parliament (MP) for Nee Soon Group Representation Constituency in Singapore
  • Foo Mee Har – serving as Member of Parliament (MP) for West Coast Group Representation Constituency in Singapore
  • Chin Tet Yung –former Singaporean Member of Parliament (MP) for Sembawang Group Representation Constituency in Singapore
  • Jing Lee – South Australian politician



  • Lee Chong Wei – former world No.1 men's singles shuttler; record ten-time Malaysia Open winner; 2006 and 2010 Commonwealth Games gold medalist; 2008, 2012 and 2016 Olympics silver medalist; World Championship silver and bronze medalist; Asian Games silver and bronze medalist; three-time All England Open champion; a total of 55 career titles won as of 2014
  • Eddy Choong – men's singles shuttler; brother of David E. L. Choong; four-time All-England Open champion
  • Wong Peng Soon – Malaysian-born men's singles shuttler who later represented Singapore; four-time All-England Open champion and record holder for the most Malaysia Open titles (8) won for over 60 years before being surpassed by Lee Chong Wei in 2013
  • David E. L. Choong – men's singles shuttler. Brother of Eddy Choong; All-England champion in 1951, 1952, and 1953
  • Ng Boon BeeAll-England Open men's doubles champion in 1965, 1966, and 1971; member of Malaysia's winning Thomas Cup team in 1967
  • Tan Yee Khan – All-England Open men's doubles champion with Ng Boon Bee in 1965 and 1966, and a member of Malaysia's winning Thomas Cup team in 1967
  • Tan Aik Huang – former All-England Open men's singles champion
  • Koo Kien Keat – former world No.1 men's doubles pair with Tan Boon Heong; Asian Games gold and silver medalist; World Championships silver and bronze medalist; All-England Open Champions; two-time Commonwealth Games gold medalist in men's doubles and 2012 London Olympics semifinalists
  • Tan Boon Heong – former world No.1 men's doubles pair with Koo Kien Keat; Asian Games gold and silver medalist, World Championships silver and bronze medalist, All-England Open Champions, 2010 Commonwealth Games gold medalist, 2012 London Olympics semifinalists and former World Junior Champion
  • Chan Chong Ming – men's doubles shuttler; 2006 Commonwealth Games gold medalist; World Championships and Asian Games bronze medalist; two-time World Junior Champion
  • Chan Peng Soon – former world No.3 mixed doubles pair with Goh Liu Ying
  • Goh Liu Ying – former world No.3 mixed doubles pair with Chan Peng Soon
  • Wong Mew Choo – former world No.7 women's singles shuttler; 2006 and 2010 Commonwealth Games silver medalist; wife to Lee Chong Wei as of 2012
  • Cheah Soon Kit – former world no.1 men's doubles shuttler; 1996 Olympics silver medalist with Yap Kim Hock, member of Malaysia's 1992 winning Thomas cup team, World Cup and World Grand Prix gold medalist, Commonwealth Games gold and silver medalist, World Championships silver and bronze medalist and Asian Games silver medalist
  • Yap Kim Hock – men's doubles shuttler; 1996 Olympics silver medalist with Cheah Soon Kit; World Grand Prix gold medalist; Commonwealth Games gold and silver medalist; World Championship silver and bronze medalist; Asian Games bronze medalist
  • Wong Choong Hann – former world No.2 men's singles shuttler; 2003 World Championships silver medalist; Commonwealth Games gold, silver and bronze medalist
  • Ong Ewe Hock – former world No.2 men's singles shuttler; 1994 Commonwealth games silver medalist


  • Yeoh Ken Nee – won bronze medal in springboard diving at the 2002 and 2010 Asian Games
  • Ooi Tze Liang – won gold medal in springboard and silver medal in platform at the 2014 Commonwealth Games
  • Leong Mun Yee – won bronze medal in springboard diving at the 2006 Asian Games
  • Cheong Jun Hoong – won a silver medal in 10m synchronized diving at the 2016 Olympics with Pandelela Rinong. Won a gold medal in the 10m platform event at the 2017 FINA World Championship s.


  • Alex Lim – won gold medal in backstroke at the 1998 Asian games, silver medal in backstroke at 2002 Commonwealth games
  • Welson Sim – competed in the men's 400 metre freestyle at the 2016 Olympics


  • Soh Chin Aun – former captain of Malaysia's national football team
  • Lim Teong Kim – retired Malaysian football player; former assistant coach of Bayern Munich U-19 team
  • Ong Kim Swee – head coach of Malaysia national football team


  • Josiah Ng – won silver medals in track cycling at the 2002, 2006, and 2010 Asian Games; won gold medal in track cycling at 2010 Commonwealth Games
  • Ng Joo Ngan – former Commonwealth Games cycling champion


  • Chung Thye Yong – first Chinese rugby player in Malaysia; first racehorse owner in the country
  • Chung Kok Ming – one of the finest tennis players in the country during his time – first Asian committee member of Perak Turf Club
  • Alex Yoong – Formula One racer
  • Aaron Lim – racing driver
  • Chai Yee Fung - Known as Mushi a Professional DotA 2 player known as best mid player; played for team Fnatic in 2016 and won 4th place in the internationals.


  • Gu Hongming 辜鸿铭 (1857–1928), famous Chinese scholar from Penang; in 1873 he began studying literature at the University of Edinburgh, graduating in 1877 with an M.A.
  • Tash Aw – author of The Harmony Silk Factory, which made the Man Booker Prize 2005 longlist and won the 2005 Whitbread First Novel award
  • Woon Swee Oan – author of wuxia novels
  • Tan Twan Eng – Penangite author of The Gift of Rain, which was longlisted for the Man Booker Prize award, and The Garden of Evening Mists, which was shortlisted for the Man Booker Prize and the IMPAC Literary Prize, and won the Man Asian Literary Prize and the Sir Walter Scott Prize for Historical Fiction
  • Kevin Nyiau 杨建伟, Kedah author of Hope is at the Turning Point | 希望在转角
  • Ed Yong, Malaysian-born British science journalist, staff writer for the Atlantic.


  • Took Leng How, a Malaysian Chinese from Penang who murdered a Chinese girl named Huang Na in Singapore. He was sentenced to death and hanged in Singapore's state gallows in 2006.
  • Yong Vui Kong, an ethnic Chinese Malaysian from Sabah, Malaysia. He was sentenced to death for drug trafficking in Singapore, but subsequently, he escaped the death sentence and was re-sentenced to life imprisonment and 15 strokes of the cane following the changes to Singapore's death penalty laws and a subsequent re-trial by the High Court of Singapore.
  • Nyu Kok Meng, a convicted robber who was, in 1983, involved in the armed robbery of a businessman in Andrew Road, Singapore. His partner-in-crime, Sek Kim Wah, without Nyu's knowledge and consent, killed three of the five robbery victims the duo took hostage in an attempt to silence them before Nyu discovered Sek's monstrous acts and went on to protect the remaining two victims and assisted them in their escape from Sek. Hence, Nyu escaped the murder charges and he was sentenced to life imprisonment and 6 strokes of the cane for being armed with a rifle while committing armed robbery under the 1973 Arms Offences Act.
  • Botak Chin, Malaysian gunman who was executed in 1980 for armed robbery and possession of firearms, the latter which was a capital crime in Malaysia.
  • Kho Jabing, a Malaysian who was of mixed Chinese and Iban descent. He was accused of murdering Cao Ruyin during a robbery in Singapore in 2008, and was sentenced to death. He was hanged in 2016.
  • Yap Weng Wah (born 1983), a Malaysian serial sex offender and hebephilic who had raped 31 teenage boys aged between 11 and 15 in Singapore between 2009 to 2012. He had also targeted at least 14 boys to satisfy his sexual urges during his time in Malaysia. After pleading guilty to 12 out of 76 charges, Yap was sentenced to a term of 30 years in jail and 24 strokes of the cane.
  • Jho Low, who engineered the 1MDB fraud scheme.


See also[edit]


  1. ^ "Archived copy". Archived from the original on 29 September 2007. Retrieved 1 December 2006.CS1 maint: archived copy as title (link)
  2. ^ "Hong Yi, the artist who paints without paintbrush".
  3. ^ 'Memories of Penang' by Jimmy Fong, retrieved 1 November 2019
  4. ^ Pills. ©, Andy: Pop Music Not (24 August 2018). ".: Jimmy Fong: Penang Boy In Australia: By Majorie Chiew". '. Retrieved 1 November 2019.
  5. ^ Jeremy Veno (2 September 2018). "Up close and personal with local beauties". The Borneo Post. Retrieved 11 July 2019.
  6. ^ Wu Lien-Teh, Plague Fighter: The Autobiography of a Modern Chinese Physician. Areca Books, 2014 (reprint). ISBN 9789675719141
  7. ^ "Up close & personal with Pua Khein-Seng". Retrieved 19 October 2011.