Gov’t open to reviving KL-Singapore HSR project, but only without the use of any public funds – Loke

Gov’t open to reviving KL-Singapore HSR project, but only without the use of any public funds – Loke

The government says that the Kuala Lumpur-Singapore High-Speed Rail (HSR) project can continue as long as there are investments from the private sector. According to transport minister Anthony Loke, the government is open to proposals to revive the project from private parties that are technically and financially capable, and would accept new mechanisms of funding and implementation for it, The Star reports.

“We are open to any proposals as long as there are private investments. We’re not stopping it,” he told reporters on the sidelines of an Invest Malaysia event in KL yesterday. He however added that the government has yet to receive any complete proposal from any party, despite talks pushing for the project.

“A lot of parties are talking about the project, but we haven’t received any complete proposal. There is no timeline for the project because the agreement has been cancelled by the previous administration, so there is no urgency in reaching any milestone,” he said.

The plan for the KL-Singapore HSR began in December 2016 when both countries signed a bilateral agreement to facilitate the project, which was supposed to have begun construction in 2018 and completed in 2025, with operations slated to begin in 2026.

Gov’t open to reviving KL-Singapore HSR project, but only without the use of any public funds – Loke

The project was planned as a 350 km-long double-track route (335 km of which was supposed to be in Malaysia, and 15 km in Singapore) with eight stops in total – Singapore, Iskandar Puteri, Batu Pahat, Muar, Ayer Keroh, Seremban, Putrajaya and Kuala Lumpur. A bridge over the Straits of Johor – with a height clearance of 25 metres – would have linked the line between both countries.

The service was projected to run 10 car-long trains – with the capacity for up to 100 passengers per car – at average speeds of 300 km/h, which would bring the rail travel time between KL and Singapore down to 90 minutes, excluding clearance at customs, immigration and quarantine.

In September 2018, at the request of Malaysia, both governments agreed to postpone the project until May 31, 2020 to allow for the identification of cost reduction options, including reviewing and optimising the alignment, station locations and the business model.

The deferment resulted in Malaysia paying S$15 million (around RM45.1 million at the time) as compensation for the abortive costs incurred by Singapore. The payment was made at the end of January 2019. In May 2020, the deferment was extended to December 31 that year.

The HSR project was finally terminated by both countries in January 2021, when it was announced that both parties could not come to an agreement on the proposed changes. It was reported that the total payment eventually made by Malaysia to Singapore was S$102.8 million (RM330.3mil).

In November 2021, the KL-SG HSR popped up again when former prime minister Datuk Seri Ismail Sabri Yaakon made an official visit to Singapore. During the visit, he suggested reviving discussions on the HSR to his Singaporean counterpart Lee Hsien Loong, who said he was open to any new proposal on the project.

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  • As much as economist argue that the flight ticket price is competitive compare to the ticket for HSR between KL and SG, we have to think for long term in terms of energy sustainability particularly the emission from the aviation industry. Just Imagine the daily flight between KL and SG is 50 per day.

    Switching from jet fuel to electric powered HSR is able to get us one step closer to environment sustainability.

    It is about time for Malaysia to step up on our green initiative. Probably by the time when HSR is completed, part of our electric grid will be sourced from renewable energy.

    Not to mention the economy benefit impact to the township situated near to HSR station

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 36 Thumb down 9
    • Kota Syburi on Mar 09, 2023 at 12:19 pm

      we bet those dungoos will argued electricity generated from coal or gas still pollutes the environment

      Like or Dislike: Thumb up 8 Thumb down 9
      • herewego on Apr 05, 2023 at 9:31 am

        Let’s find fact shall we ?

        One flight of jet-powered emit more carbon emission
        One ride of HSR carrying thousands of people emit more carbon emission ?

        Like or Dislike: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0
    • Yongkianchong on Mar 10, 2023 at 3:41 pm

      50(daily flight) ×350(passengers / flight) × Rm450 (ticket price) ×365 ( days / year) × 15 (years) ×1.3( ( factor in future flight no increase) =Rm56.05billions
      If the HSR project cost is MORE than RM71billion,hardly can be profitable in 15 years.Assuming the 8 stations provide revenue of RM1billion per year

      Like or Dislike: Thumb up 4 Thumb down 0
      • Where got narrowbody jet seats 350 pax..even if SQ use their A350 widebody it does not have such seating capacity

        Like or Dislike: Thumb up 4 Thumb down 0
  • China, hello China, hello Chinaaaaaaa… dengar tak nie?

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 11 Thumb down 2
  • Railer on Mar 09, 2023 at 12:29 pm

    HSR with 8(!) stops within 335km? ETS would be sufficient for that.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 5 Thumb down 10
    • I think there could be two types of service. One with just one stop at malacca and another with 8 stops.

      Like or Dislike: Thumb up 3 Thumb down 1
  • Keyboard warrior on Mar 09, 2023 at 1:11 pm

    Please hire Korean or Japanese company. Not some random from mainland china like ecrl

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 21 Thumb down 13
    • Nobody can beat china on price. Japan companies that used to make consumer goods all gone taken over by china.

      Like or Dislike: Thumb up 7 Thumb down 2
  • Kea Was on Mar 09, 2023 at 1:24 pm

    Well Ok but please recoup the money (RM300,000,000 paid to our rich neighbour) from the previous AA minister who canceled the project in blunder while still in the same government talks about reviving the project just after 10 months?

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 19 Thumb down 1
  • This idiot and his equally idiotic boss are the culprit that cancelled the HSR in the first place. What right does he have to talk about HSR? Bring back the previous TM!

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 8 Thumb down 12
  • Bosan on Mar 09, 2023 at 9:37 pm

    Give it to YTL as they can do with ERL from KLIA to KL. No politicians can make use of the project for their political milage.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 2 Thumb down 1
  • 4musa73 on Mar 09, 2023 at 11:07 pm

    Revive? Then cancel. Pay Sg money somemore. Dont waste money.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 6 Thumb down 2
  • Now, stretch it Singapore – KL – Penang – Phuket – Bangkok

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 9 Thumb down 1
    • Yup. And all the way to Siberia.

      Like or Dislike: Thumb up 2 Thumb down 0
    • Li Peng on Mar 10, 2023 at 12:11 pm

      Phuket planned a LRT already back in 2005, but Penang built the second bridge for strange reasons without rails in mind. Obviously Penang don’t want rail traffic.

      Like or Dislike: Thumb up 2 Thumb down 0
  • TeamCC on Mar 10, 2023 at 10:15 am

    Ahh the “cost reduction options”, same cutting corner excuse like washrooms with no jamban in the name of “eradicating corruption”.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 3 Thumb down 0
  • Buat hsr sendiri tak boleh ke? Dari johor baharu ke perlis ….kenapa nak libatkan singapura?

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 2 Thumb down 1
    • I’d rather they realign the route to run through downtown malacca and port dickson before stops in KLIA, putrajaya and KL..mana ada HSR station jauh from city centre like planned ayer keroh is?

      Like or Dislike: Thumb up 1 Thumb down 0

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