JOHOR BARU, May 11 — Reviving the Kuala Lumpur-Singapore High Speed Rail (HSR) project as a privately-funded initiative was discussed during a bilateral meeting of Malaysia and the republic’s transport ministers today.
Transport Minister Anthony Loke said he and his Singaporean counterpart, S. Iswaran, spoke about the development of the HSR project and the feasibility of restarting it.
He said the Malaysian government’s stand on a privately-funded HSR project was clear.
“At the time being, we are still at the feedback stage on its revival and there are several Malaysian private companies that are interested in the project.
“However, we still need to look at its implementation and funding.
“On the HSR project’s development, we will continue to engage with each other (the Singapore government) on the way forward,” said Loke to reporters.
He said this during a joint press conference with Iswaran after both ministers made a joint site visit to the Johor Baru-Singapore Rapid Transit System (RTS) project in Stulang Laut here today.
The RTS Link is a four-kilometre shuttle service between Singapore at Woodlands North station and Malaysia at Bukit Chagar station here.
Meanwhile, Iswaran described the meeting with Loke as a positive start, where both parties took the opportunity to look at revisiting the HSR project.
“We are ready to work with the Malaysian government and Singapore is prepared to study any proposals to restart the HSR project,” he said.
Previously in 2021, Singapore Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong was reported saying the republic is open to any new proposal from Malaysia on the Kuala Lumpur-Singapore HSR project, though both countries earlier had agreed to terminate the project.
Malaysia and Singapore had signed bilateral agreements for the HSR project on December 13, 2016, before it was delayed to 2020 following Malaysia’s change of government in 2018.
In 2021, however, Malaysia and Singapore jointly announced the termination of the HSR project as no new agreement was reached after the previous deal lapsed at the end of 2020.
In March 2021, Malaysia announced it had paid S$102.8 million (RM330 million) to Singapore as compensation.