hitachi bullet train

A memorandum of understanding (MoU) between Malaysia and Singapore is expected to be signed by mid-2016, according to prime minister Datuk Seri Najib Razak. The MoU relates to the KL-Singapore high-speed rail (HSR), The Sun Daily reports.

“We expect to sign the MoU in the middle of this year with Singapore,” Najib said in his keynote at Invest Malaysia 2016. He highlighted that the HSR that connects Kuala Lumpur and Singapore is one of the development projects under the 11th Malaysia Plan and is therefore unaffected by the reduction in government expenditure.

“The HSR link to Singapore, the Pan Borneo Highway, the MRT and LRT, the Pengerang development in Johor – they’re all still going ahead. We need them. They are not grandiose mega projects for show and vanity, as favoured by some. No, these are a part of our future,” Najib explained.

HSR stations proposed

“So it is clear that we have an economic plan, that it has worked, and that it is still working. It is a long-term plan that works for the benefit of Malaysians not just today, but tomorrow, and in the years and decades to come,” the New Straits Times quoted Najib as saying.

The RM70 billion KL-Singapore HSR project is expected to be launched in one to two years’ time. Tentatively, plans show that the line will start in Bandar Malaysia – with stations in Seremban, Ayer Keroh, Muar Batu Pahat and Nusajaya – and will end in Jurong East, Singapore.

According to a report by The Star, China appears to be leading in the bid to develop the HSR. Among those interested in the project are Japan and South Korea.