High-speed rail services 'still under discussion'

An aerial view of Jurong Country Club, where the high-speed rail terminus will be located.
An aerial view of Jurong Country Club, where the high-speed rail terminus will be located. PHOTO: ST FILE

Singapore and Malaysia are still in discussion over the commercial and operating models of the high-speed rail (HSR), the Ministry of Transport (MOT) said yesterday, in response to a Malaysian news report claiming that several aspects of the joint project had been decided.

A ministry spokesman said the possibility of having two services for the HSR linking Singapore and Kuala Lumpur - one a non-stop express service, and the other a transit service calling at stations in between - was still being discussed.

This was contrary to a report published yesterday, in Malaysia's The Edge Financial Daily, which said that both governments have "come to a consensus" on the alignment of the HSR and have decided to have the two different services.

The MOT spokesman said: "The alignment is also under discussion; the exact alignment can be finalised only after completion of detailed engineering studies."

Giving an update on the project, the ministry said that both countries are studying the feedback gathered from a request-for-information exercise that concluded last month.

This feedback will be used "to improve the project's commercial and operating models and procurement approach", the spokesman added.

The Singapore-KL HSR, which was first announced by Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong and Malaysian Prime Minister Najib Razak in 2013, will allow commuters to travel from Singapore to KL, or vice versa, in about 90minutes.

The Singapore terminus of the link will be in Jurong East, while Malaysia has said its terminal station will be in Bandar Malaysia in Kuala Lumpur, with the following stops in between: Seremban, Ayer Keroh, Muar, Batu Pahat and Nusajaya.

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on January 05, 2016, with the headline 'High-speed rail services 'still under discussion''. Print Edition | Subscribe