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The East Coast Rail Link (ECRL) project will not be downsized despite the reduction in its construction costs from RM65.5 billion to RM44 billion, transport minister Anthony Loke said. Only the Kota Bharu-Wakaf Bharu-Pengkalan Kubor alignment was not implemented as this segment would not significantly increase the value of the current railway transport network, Bernama reported Loke as saying.

The stations cancelled were Bentong, Gombak North, Gombak Integrated Terminal, Telaga Papan, Jelawat, Pengkalan Kubor and Wakaf Bahru, he added. “The new stations identified are Bangi/Kajang, Putrajaya Sentral, Port Klang as well as some new stations proposed in Selangor and Negeri Sembilan,” Loke said.

A reduction of RM21.5 billion was attained through a series of engineering reviews as well as value-engineering the implementation of the rail project as a whole. A technical study was conducted by the project owner appointed by the government, Malaysia Rail Link Sdn Bhd and China Communications Construction Company Ltd (CCCC).

Following its initial cancellation, the ECRL project has since resumed with the aforementioned RM21.5 billion saving, making for a cost per kilometre of RM68.7 million compared to RM95.5 billion previously, the government said. Administrative capital Putrajaya is set to be one of the 20 stops along the rail link, and the ECRL has been scheduled for completion in 2026.