Singapore and Malaysia to sign MOU on high speed rail project

Malaysia and Singapore will sign a MOU to build a high-speed rail linking Kuala Lumpur and Singapore, with the site here planned in Jurong East (above).
Malaysia and Singapore will sign a MOU to build a high-speed rail linking Kuala Lumpur and Singapore, with the site here planned in Jurong East (above).PHOTO: ST FILE

KUALA LUMPUR • Malaysia and Singapore will sign a memorandum of understanding on Tuesday as they take a step forward to build a high-speed rail (HSR) linking Kuala Lumpur and Singapore, the New Straits Times (NST) newspaper reported yesterday.

The signing ceremony will be held at Malaysian Prime Minister Najib Razak's official residence in Putrajaya and will be witnessed by his Singapore counterpart, Mr Lee Hsien Loong.

The proposed 350km-long HSR line will have one terminus in a new township called Bandar Malaysia at the edge of Kuala Lumpur, with the other in Jurong East.

The fast-speed train link will cut travelling time between Singapore and Kuala Lumpur to 90 minutes, compared with more than four hours by car.

The HSR line will have double tracks, the report said.

NST said the HSR will have five transit stations in Seremban (Negeri Sembilan state), Ayer Keroh (Malacca), and Muar, Batu Pahat and Iskandar Puteri in Johor.

Iskandar Puteri is the new name for Nusajaya.

The memorandum will pave the way for detailed negotiations on the main bilateral agreement, which is expected to be signed by the end of this year, the paper said.

The signing will be "a major milestone in terms of getting all the basic ground rules that will set the future direction of the HSR project", NST quoted a source as saying.

It previously reported that the project has been estimated to cost between RM60 billion (S$21 billion) and RM65 billion, based on a US$10 million (S$13 million) per kilometre estimate for the systems and tracks.

The civil infrastructure work is expected to cost three times more than that, the report said.

A spokesman for Singapore's Ministry of Transport told The Straits Times: "We are working towards signing the MOU on July 19. We are still in the process of confirming the details."

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on July 15, 2016, with the headline 'S'pore, Malaysia to sign MOU on high-speed rail project'. Print Edition | Subscribe