Flag of Malaysia
Jalur Gemilang
Adopted September 16, 1963 [1]
Designed by Mohamed Hamzah [2]
Proportions 1:2 [1]

The flag of Malaysia consists of fourteen equal horizontal stripes alternating red and white, with a blue canton the height of eight stripes containing a charge of a golden fourteen-pointed star and a crescent.


The fourteen red and white stripes represent all thirteen states of Malaysia and the Federal Territories. The blue canton represents the nation and its unity, while the crescent represents the religion of Islam, and the fourteen-pointed star symbolises the Yang di-Pertuan Agong (King of Malaysia) as the supreme head of the federation which consists of thirteen states and three Federal Territories.

The crescent being larger than the star symbolises the position of the religion of Islam as the religion of the federation, and that the Yang di-Pertuan Agong as the supreme head of the federation is still subjected to the religion of Islam, as shown in the Federal Constitution of Malaysia.[3]

Historical flags[]

In 1963, three former British colonies, North Borneo (known today as Sabah), Sarawak, and Singapore (which would later be kicked out), joined the federation, forming the Federation of Malaysia which we know today. With the addition of these states, the flag of Malaysia was amended to add three additional stripes and three more points to the star, representing the three new states. After Singapore's departure from the country on the 9th of August 1965, the fourteenth stripe and point in the star remained untouched, until 1st of February 1974 when the meaning was changed to represent the Federal Territory of Kuala Lumpur, and later to also represent the Federal Territories of Labuan and Putrajaya.

On the 31st of August 1997 in conjunction with the 40th national day, the flag was officially given a name, "Jalur Gemilang", chosen by the 4th Prime Minister of Malaysia, Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad.

Proposed flags[]

The winning flag was then given a few amendments to its colour and star, swapping the colours red and blue, and changing the five-pointed star to an eleven pointed star, signifying the eleven states of the Federation of Malaya. The flag was then officiated and first raised in front of the Sultan of Selangor's palace on the 26th of May 1950. It was first raised as the flag of the Federation of Malaya on the 31st of August 1957, the day of the formation of the country, replacing the British Union flag at Merdeka Square.


The flag of the Majapahit Empire.

The flag of Johor.

  • Despite the common claims and misunderstanding, the flag of Malaysia was not based on the flag of the United States, but was actually based on the flags of the former Majapahit Empire and the flag of Johor, a state in Malaysia where the flag designer came from.[3]


Throughout the history of Malaysia, there has only ever been one flag. The first was introduced as a result of a national flag designing competition and referendum in the year 1949, before the formation of the country (then Federation of Malaya). 373 designs were received by post, which was later narrowed down to three finalists, which consists two flags with a blue field and two red crossed-krisses (Malay dagger) surrounded by stars, and another flag which was later chosen as the winner, which was the flag of Malaya. After the formation of Malaysia, it changed to the flag to the current flag.

Malaysia.svg States and Federal Territories of Malaysia
Johor.png Johor Kedah.png Kedah Kelantan.png Kelantan Kuala Lumpur.png Kuala Lumpur Labuan.png Labuan
Malacca.png Malacca Negeri Sembilan.png Negeri Sembilan Pahang.png Pahang Penang.png Penang Perak.png Perak
Perlis.png Perlis Putrajaya.png Putrajaya Sabah.png Sabah Sarawak.png Sarawak Selangor.png Selangor
Terengganu.png Terengganu
Federal Territories (Malaysia).png Wilayah Persekutuan