PETALING JAYA: Singapore has welcomed Malaysia’s decision to proceed with the RTS Link project.
"Both sides are now discussing the changes to the project, which Malaysia is proposing in order to reduce the project cost," said the island republic's Ministry of Transport.
"As the changes will require amendments to the RTS Link Agreement, the discussions will take some time. Both sides are working hard on this," it added.
The bilateral agreement to build the cross-border rail link was inked on Jan 18,2018, after discussions between the two countries’ land transport authorities.
The RTS Link Project – aimed at addressing congestion in the daily commute between the two countries – was initially scheduled to begin construction this year and slated for completion by December 2024.
However, the project has been delayed after Pakatan Harapan took power in May last year and asked that it be postponed in order to review ways to lower the cost of the project estimated at RM4.93bil.
On Thursday (Oct 31), Prime Minister Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad announced that Malaysia would go ahead with the project with some adjustments that will trim the cost to RM3.16bil.
He said this represented a savings of 36% or RM1.77bil.
The proposed 4km-long rail project will link Bukit Chagar in Johor Baru and Woodlands in Singapore, and will have the capacity to ferry 10,000 passengers per hour.
It is aimed at providing an alternative means of transport at for 80,000 to 100,000 commuters plying the causeway daily.
Under the original agreement, the one-way fare was set at RM15. If Malaysia chose to terminate the project, it would have to pay compensation in abortive costs, reported to be RM200mil.
We're sorry, this article is unavailable at the moment. If you wish to read this article, kindly contact our Customer Service team at 1-300-88-7827. Thank you for your patience - we're bringing you a new and improved experience soon!