SEPANG: The construction cost for the extension of the Express Rail Link (ERL) connecting Kuala Lumpur International Airport (KLIA) and the new KLIA2 will be borne by the Government as it is considered a form of public transportation, says Datuk Seri Hishammuddin Tun Hussein.
The Acting Transport Minister also defended the charging of a RM2 inter-terminal fare for travel between the KLIA and KLIA2 as necessary for the maintenance of the ERL.
Hishammuddin’s response came about after a statement on Monday by Public Accounts Committee chairman Datuk Nur Jazlan Mohamed, who questioned the RM100mil bill for the extension.
“We (the Government) are footing the bill because it is public transportation.
“The RM2 fee is to ensure that all aspects of this facility are taken care of, so that we can pass it on to many, many generations to come,” Hishammuddin said at a press conference after opening the ERL station at KLIA2 here yesterday.
Although a minimal inter-terminal fee is charged for ERL travel between KLIA and KLIA2, the fares from KLIA2 and other ERL stations are the same as that charged on travels between those stations and KLIA.
The 2.14km ERL extension between KLIA and KLIA2 would terminate at the KLIA2 Gateway Complex, which adjoins the main terminal building of KLIA2.
The inter-terminal journey is estimated to take three-minutes and 30 seconds.
On the issue of safety, Hishammuddin reiterated that the KLIA2 had received the necessary accreditation to ensure that the building was fit for public use.
The International Civil Aviation Organisation (ICAO) has verified that the KLIA2 is structurally in compliance with its requirements and safety standards, while the Malaysia Airports Holdings Berhad (MAHB) had, on April 18, received the Certificate of Completion and Compliance (CCC) for the terminal.
“I have always said that we will never compromise on safety and we have assurance now with the CCC, ICAO (approval), and independent reports being done by consultants.
“I don’t know what else we can do to assure the public that the KLIA2 is safe to operate,” he added.
“The past is the past. I want to look forward (to issues) that the KLIA2 needs to address in (facilitating) the movement of thousands of people,” he said.
The new terminal is set to open its doors to the public tomorrow, with the first aircraft to arrive at KLIA2 at 12.05am from Kota Kinabalu.
The current Low-Cost Carrier Terminal (LCCT) will cease operations on May 9.