Ampang-Kuala Lumpur Elevated Highway (AKLEH)

Presumably in a bid to promote transparency in its processes (or to make a case for raising toll rates), highway concessionaire Projek Lintas Kota Holdings (Prolintas) has revealed the details of the concession agreements on the three highways it currently manages – the Ampang-Kuala Lumpur Elevated Highway (AKLEH), Guthrie Corridor Expressway (GCE) and the Lebuhraya Kemuning-Shah Alam (LKSA).

The nation’s second-largest highway operator said that although the agreements did provide provisions for increasing toll rates, it has maintained them at RM1.50 for AKLEH and RM1.20 for LKSA at the Seri Muda toll plaza, while GCE rates saw only a “slight” uptick from RM1.00 to RM1.40.

With regards to AKLEH in particular, Prolintas added that the road user charges were supposed to be raised to RM2.50 in 2008 and a staggering RM3.50 this year. To date, the company has received a total of RM119.2 million in compensation from the government – based on the difference between the estimated projected toll collection without subsidies and the actual amount – in order to retain the current rate.

“We want to be clear and transparent about the details of the agreements so that road users get an accurate picture of the expressways managed by Prolintas instead of relying on rumours and hearsay from third parties,” said group chief executive Datuk Ir Zainudin A Kadir.

Lebuhraya Kemuning-Shah Alam (LKSA)

So where has that money been channeled? Straight into upgrading works, apparently – the company is said to have spent RM120 million alone in upgrading AKLEH from a two-lane dual carriageway to a three-lane dual carriageway from KM 4.6 to KM 6.0, required as part of the agreement once traffic exceeded the 93,600-vehicles-a-day mark.

“We will try our best to continue to upgrade and maintain our expressways and hope that road user charges are kept low so that as many people as possible can benefit from shorter distances and faster travel times to their destinations comfortably and safely,” Zainudin added.

Details of the concession agreements are available for public viewing at the works ministry headquarters in Kuala Lumpur.