Published: Fri, June 01, 2018
Global Media | By Garry Long

Malaysia says it will axe high-speed railway to Singapore

Malaysia says it will axe high-speed railway to Singapore

A Singapore transport ministry spokesman told AFP the government had "not yet received any official notification from Malaysia".

Newly elected Malaysian prime minister Mahathir raised the possibility of dropping the RM100 billion (S$34 billion) project with Singapore in an interview with The Edge published last Saturday. "The people voluntarily want to share their earnings with the government to help ease the burden".

Dr Mahathir, who was sworn in as Malaysia seventh Prime Minister just over two weeks ago, said Malaysia would have to pay RM500 million (US$125 mil) in penalties to Singapore over the cancellation of the project.

The absence of the rail connection will make the district less attractive to businesses as the development of the area was dependent on the fruition of the HSR, said International Property Advisor chief executive Ku Swee Yong said.

By GCR Staff0 CommentsIn a surprise decision that will disappoint worldwide engineering firms, Malaysia's new Prime Minister Mahathir Mohamad declared yesterday that he will cancel the multi-billion-dollar scheme to build a high-speed railway between Kuala Lumpur and Singapore.

"We had agreed to proceed with the HSR project based on mutual benefits and obligations set out in the HSR bilateral agreement", she said, adding that the ministry will wait for official communication from Malaysia.

"We have borrowed too much money".

Malaysia will implement a new sales tax in September to replace the consumption levy that it's scrapping next month as Prime Minister Mahathir Mohamad looks for ways to temper concerns on the nation's budget.

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The Facebook page of the powerful Sultan of Johor - Malaysia's southernmost state bordering Singapore - a year ago published a video of a tiny maritime facility built on Middle Rock. But of course, why we cancelled the project is because of affordability.

A computer generated image of the planned high-speed station at Seremban, Malaysia.

Mahathir, who was responding to a question about the ICJ challenge, said Malaysia had "already built structures" on Middle Rock.

However, Koh still hopes the HSR would link Kuala Lumpur and the republic and be extended to Malaysia's northern city of Penang.

"It is a final decision, but it will take time because we have an agreement with Singapore", Mahathir said.

Singapore did not have an immediate reaction to Wednesday's announcement on the rail project.

Construction of the 350km line was slated to begin next year, with operations slated to have commenced in 2026.

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