SINGAPORE: The Republic’s terminus for the Kuala Lumpur-Singapore High Speed Rail will be located at Jurong East.
Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong announced this on Tuesday (May 5) after the Leaders’ Retreat with his Malaysian counterpart Najib Razak.
Jurong East was chosen as it dovetails with Singapore’s overall plans to transform the area into a second Central Business District, according to a statement.
Malaysia had earlier identified five terminus stations: Kuala Lumpur (at Bandar Malaysia), Seremban, Melaka, Muar, Batu Pahat, Nusajaya and the final stop in Singapore.
In a joint statement, both leaders noted “steady progress” on the High Speed Rail project and that agreements have been reached on the dual co-located Customs, Immigration and Quarantine (CIQ) configuration, the frequency bands to be reserved for High Speed Rail operations, as well as on locating the depot and stabling facilities in Malaysia.
The High Speed Rail project, which was agreed upon in 2013, has been described by both leaders as a “game changer”. It aims to cut down on travel time between Kuala Lumpur and Singapore to just 90 minutes.
The Prime Ministers also noted that the initial target of completion of the project – which was the year 2020 – needs to be re-assessed due to the scale and complexity of the project. No new time frame has been provided.
Both leaders said they hope to come to an agreement on the new date by the end of the year, and will give an updated timeline on when the trains will start running then. Mr Najib pointed out that construction will take five years, on top of one year for designing the project, and one year for the tender process.
Both Malaysia and Singapore have been in active discussion on the technical, operational, security and other aspects of the High Speed Rail. Both leaders reaffirmed that both countries are fully committed to the success of the project. They look forward to “further progress on this game-changing iconic project, which will boost connectivity, facilitate travel between Kuala Lumpur and Singapore, enhance business linkages, and improve people-to-people ties”, the leaders said in the joint statement.