No compensation. Starting later need not be OPENING later…

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First up is good news for the High Speed Rail KL – SG (HSR). Article in Edgeprop.my   This is what our Economic Affairs Minister Datuk Seri Mohamed Azmin Ali said, “Malaysia will not need to compensate Singapore for the indefinite period that the Kuala Lumpur-Singapore High-Speed Rail (HSR) project is put on hold.  The project is on hold indefinitely. Singapore has agreed. We are confident our economy will improve … There is no need to pay compensation during this period.” However he added that should the project be cancelled, then a penalty would have to be paid. This wwas what was reported in The Straits Times quoting The Edge newspaperon 3 September. It quoted sources as saying the compromise was reached “in a spirit of good neighbourliness”, with Malaysia being spared from having to pay a RM500mil penalty for postponing the project. The deferment is until May 31, 2020. Initially, there were proposal for the HSR KL- SG project tobe scrapped.

This was what was reported in BusinessTimes.com.sg.  The postponement of the Singapore-Kuala Lumpur High Speed Rail (HSR) project is expected to be formally announced this week. Last Thursday (Aug 30), Singapore’s Minister for Transport Khaw Boon Wan said on Facebook that he had met Malaysia’s Economic Affairs Minister Azmin Ali and they were “brainstorming ideas on how to further our bilateral relationship”. He added, “We should be able to announce our joint decisions on RTS and HSR soon.”  The source told The Edge that Singapore recognised the strain the project’s construction could have on Malaysia’s financial health.  Other details of the HSR: The rail link was expected to cut travel time between the two cities from four hours by car currently to 90 minutes. The line was to have eight stations: the Jurong East station in Singapore, and on the Malaysian side, Bandar Malaysia, Sepang-Putrajaya, Seremban, Melaka, Muar, Batu Pahat and Iskandar Puteri stations.

With this deferment, what will happen to the 2026 completion timeline? If we refer to all the reports thus far, it corresponds with what I believe. 2 years deferment does not mean the project will be completed only 2 years later in 2028. Initial plan was for the line to be operational by 2026. The reason is simple, the construction part could have been faster in future because of technological advances. In fact, there are many other non-construction things which could be carried out moving forward too. Remember, this is a deferment, it is not a cancellation. As for the thought of HSR KL – SG competing with the airlines, here’s an earlier article about it: New Demand, not just existing. This is the beauty of the many stops. Oh yeah, no idea if the two ministers would be doing it from the same country or not. Happy waiting for the joint formal announcement yeah.

written on 3 Sept 2018

Next suggested article:RTS and the 10,000 travellers in one hour per direction. 

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