Malaysia Prime Minister Ismail Sabri Yaakob confirmed on 22 August that Malaysia is discussing with Singapore to revive the Kuala Lumpur – Singapore High-Speed Rail project.
He told Bernama that Malaysia is hoping to resume work on the HSR, with Malaysian transport minister Wee Ka Siong discussing it with his Singapore counterpart, S Iswaran on the matter.
If the talks are successful, the project will begin work at the earliest possible date, and it will also be worked at on a faster timeline.
There will also be some additional changes to the project’s terms and conditions.
Datuk Seri Ismail said that Malaysia is planning to establish an HSR between KL and Bangkok as well, hence the urgency.
Malaysia is also intending to extend the railway line all the way to China, with the latter currently building a high-speed train line with Thailand.
An agreement on the HSR project was first signed in December 2016 between Singapore Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong and former Malaysian Prime Minister Najib Rajak (now in jail).
Work was then started on the railway, with Singapore appointing a company to design the HSR’s infrastructure, but Malaysia then requested for a stoppage to the project in May 2018 after their election.
About 4 months later, the project was then stopped by both countries for 2 more years, with Malaysia being ordered to reimburse Singapore $15 million.
Malaysia then further requested an additional 7 months suspension on the project on 31 May 2020, before the project was permanently terminated on 31 December 2020 after the two countries failed to reach an agreement.