Saturday, 20 October, 2018

Singapore to feel loss of high-speed rail link keenly

Mahathir confirms high-speed rail project with Singapore to be scrapped - The Jakarta Post Malaysia’s new PM scraps Kuala Lumpur–Singapore high-speed rail
Andrew Cummings | 01 June, 2018, 04:14

Singapore's Foreign Minister Vivian Balakrishnan said the Lion City was "happy to agree" to the development, which comes weeks before the ICJ was to hear the review.

Mahathir said the 350-kilometer (218-mile) rail project slated to be completed by 2026 is too costly.

"We will renegotiate the agreement", he said.

The government will establish a "Tabung Harapan Malaysia" fund to accept donations from the people to help strengthen its financial position, Prime Minister Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad announced today.

Mahathir's alliance won a stunning victory in May 9 elections to oust scandal-tainted former Prime Minister Najib Razak and end his coalition's 60-year grip on power. "We'll make no money at all from this arrangement".

Some Singaporean netizens have expressed disappointment by Malaysia's plans to axe the deal but they also appear to be empathetic to the reasons.

"The abandonment of HSR would also mean that the value of 1MDB's Bandar Malaysia project, which was to be the terminus station of the HSR, would be substantially decreased - diminishing the ability of 1MDB to repay its debts", he added.

Soggy Alberto churns inland, spreading rain widely - 5/30/2018 1:15:01 AM
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When questioned about the compensation that needed to be paid, he said he "supposed" it would be RM500mil.

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

Najib said this is because the project was not created based on the decision of one country alone, but done after careful study on its benefits.

The new government has said Najib - now being investigated over his role in the 1MDB financial scandal - had over leveraged the country by committing to too many infrastructure projects at the same time. And we can not pay so much money if we continue with the project.

Mahathir said he was not sure how long his decision would take to implement, adding: "Of course we have to talk to Singapore, we have an agreement with them".

Dr Mahathir is seeking more fiscal space to fulfill election pledges that include reducing living costs and fuel subsidies after finding the state saddled with debt and contingent liabilities exceeding 1 trillion ringgit (S$337.2 billion).

"So we are not only looking at the [high speed rail project] but also mega projects which cost billions of dollars". Minister of Finance, Lim Guan Eng ends the statement by expressing their honest appreciation and gratitude to all Malaysians for all their support and concern.

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