M’sia received offers to halve cost of HSR projectGuan Eng

13-Jul-2018 Intellasia | New Straits Times | 6:02 AM Print This Post

Malaysia has received offers to halve the cost of building the Singapore-Kuala Lumpur High Speed Rail (HSR) project, said Finance minister Lim Guan Eng. Lim in an interview with the Singapore Straits Times said if the initial costs of the project, which stood at RM110 billion, was lowered to half, there was a possibility for the government to resume the plan. He however said formal proposals had yet to be made. “Such offers showed that the initial cost for the project was too high. “The project by itself makes sense, but not at the exorbitant cost. “We don’t know whether that’s serious… (but) that means the whole thing was way overpriced and that raises more questions,” he was quoted as saying by the Singapore daily. The HSR project, which reportedly cost about RM110 billion, is one of the several infrastructure plans initiated by former prime minister Datuk Seri Najib Razak’s administration being reviewed by the new government. Lim said the offers were made after prime minister Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad voiced out the government’s intention to cancel the project which was deemed as too expensive especially when Malaysia was trying to reduce its RM1 trillion debt. When asked by The Straits Times if Malaysia had a different plan, Lim said a discussion on the matter would be held with Singapore. The daily also quoted a Malaysian government source as saying the compensation cost for cancelling the HSR project was lower than the initial estimated RM500 million, excluding expenses that have already been incurred. However, the government source also floated the idea of a loan from Singapore. “If Singapore can offer a soft loan, it would drastically reduce the interest cost,” the source is quoted as saying.



Category: Malaysia

Print This Post