S'wak to launch e-ticketing system for express boats in second half of 2020

  • Nation
  • Tuesday, 14 Jan 2020

SIBU: An e-ticketing system that facilitates the purchase and booking of express boat tickets in the state is expected to begin in the second half of this year.

Sarawak Transport minister Datuk Lee Kim Shin said the ministry is currently in the process of getting approval from the Sarawak Multimedia Board (SMA).

"For the first phase, e-tickets will cover express boat routes in the central regions of Sibu, Kapit, Song and Kuching. If everything goes well, we hope this e-ticket facility for this first phase will be implemented in the second half of this year," said Lee on Tuesday (Jan 14).

He was speaking to a press conference after officiating the launch of the River Transport Safety Campaign in conjunction with this year's Chinese New Year celebration at the Sibu Express Boat Passenger Terminal.

Lee said the initiative was part of the ministry's program to upgrade public services in line with Sarawak's march towards a digital economy.

According to Lee, the number of people using commercial riverine transport for the past two years has shown significant improvement.

"Last year (2019), we recorded 2,893,871 passengers which was an increase of 30% as compared to 2018 with 2,518,249 passengers," he said.

Lee stressed that his ministry would continue to work through the Sarawak River Authority(LSS) to ensure that all existing express boat passenger terminals were in good condition and safe for passengers.

"In this regard, the ministry has allocated about RM500,000 to upgrade the upper level of the Sibu Express Boat Passenger Termina, l which is expected to start this year.

"Today we will provide the construction site for the contractor. We hope upgrading works will start soon and everything will be ready by this year," he said.

The project, when completed, would see the enforcement office moved upstairs and while their existing office place on the ground floor would be opened up for the convenience of express boat passengers.

Meanwhile, the River Transport Safety Campaign will run from Jan 14 to 23 with the second phase running from Feb 1 to 2.

Also present were LSS chairman Dr Murni Suhaili, LSS board member Datuk Chieng Buong Toon, Chief Minister's political secretary Michael Tiang and Sibu Deputy Resident Wong Hee Sieng.

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