However, the cards are not official documentation and are not recognised by authorities. They do not allow these refugees to legally work, study or seek medical help in government hospitals.
They merely identify card owners as refugees and contain wordings appealing to the community to help them eke out a living while they temporarily reside in Malaysia, and until they are resettled in a third country.
There are currently more than 180,000 refugees in Malaysia registered with the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR).
Of this, more than 80 per cent are from Myanmar, with children below 18 years old numbering about 50,000, according to the UN Refugee Agency.
Malaysian authorities have been conducting raids to weed out illegal migrants.
With Prime Minister Anwar Ibrahim aiming to bring in half a million foreign workers to fuel the nation’s economic recovery, many NGOs have urged the government to help educate and train the refugee community so that they can be absorbed into the country’s workforce.
However, Home Minister Saiful Nasution said there are no plans to change the laws regarding the status of the refugees at the moment.
“As of today, it remains status quo because there are other priorities to accept the refugees to work,” said Mr Saiful. “(But) Definitely that is one of the top topics that we will need to look into.”