On a green transit journey


ISKANDAR PUTERI: Johor has become the first state in the country to have cross-border electric buses in line with the state government’s aim to be greener.

Mentri Besar Datuk Onn Hafiz Ghazi said the electric buses will be travelling between Johor and Singapore.

“This is a very important collaboration for the state government as we view environmental issues seriously and believe in the need to protect the environment in the medium and long term.

“The Johor Public Transport Corporation (PAJ) will also be looking into using electric buses,” he said, adding that the state plans to emulate Singapore in reducing carbon footprints.

Onn Hafiz said this during the inaugural launch of the first cross-border electric buses at a mall here yesterday.

During the ceremony, bus operator Handal Indah Sdn Bhd was also recognised by the Malaysia Book of Records as the first to have cross-border electric buses.

Apart from providing 60 units of the electric buses, Handal Indah will also be setting up charging ports for electric vehicles in Johor, says Onn Hafiz.

Handal Indah Group of Companies founder and chairman Lim Han Weng said that the company had invested RM80mil for the electric buses and to set up the charging pots.

“We are committed to decarbonising, but this will take time and more investments from our side. We are still at the early stage of electrification in Malaysia, and we are committed to pushing forward,” he said.

Separately, Onn Hafiz said that Johor had presented a proposal to the Federal Government for the formation of an elevated Autonomous Rapid Transit (ART).

“We have presented the proposal to His Majesty Sultan Ibrahim, King of Malaysia, and Johor Regent Tunku Ismail Sultan Ibrahim, and have received their consent.

“The plan has also been brought forward to the Federal Government for further fine-tuning.”

Onn Hafiz said that this was one of the steps the state government is taking in dealing with congestion in the state, especially after the completion of the Rapid Transit Link (RTS) between Johor Baru and Singapore.

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