24 November 2015

SINGAPORE: Malaysia's Land Public Transport Commission (SPAD) and Singapore's Land Transport Authority (LTA) have jointly launched a "market sensing exercise" on the Kuala Lumpur-Singapore High Speed Rail (HSR) project.

In a press release issued by LTA on Wednesday (Oct 7), it said that the two parties will launch a Request for Information to "gauge market interest" and "gather industry opinion on selected commercial and technical aspects" of the HSR project.

The Request for Information will mark the next phase of the project and the feedback received will "inform the ongoing bilateral discussions and formal tender process subsequently", LTA said.

This exercise is expected to conclude by the end of this year.

In a joint statement, Malaysian Minister in the Prime Minister’s Department Abdul Wahid Omar and Singapore Coordinating Minister for Infrastructure and Minister for Transport Mr Khaw Boon Wan said: “This market sounding exercise marks a major milestone in our HSR journey. It is important for us to be properly informed of the industry views.

"We want to use this exercise to gauge market interest in the project and solicit views on different models and approaches. The feedback is crucial in helping us refine and validate our options, which will in turn help ensure a successful tender process subsequently”.

In a blog post on Wednesday, Mr Khaw said: "This RFI will help us gather views from the industry, on how we should structure the project commercially. To be sustainable and exemplary, the project must meet the market test."

The Kuala Lumpur-Singapore HSR link was first announced by Malaysian Prime Minister Najib Abdul Razak and Singapore Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong in February 2013.

Singapore's terminus station will be at Jurong East, while the one in Kuala Lumpur will be in Bandar Malaysia. With the HSR, it will take about 90 minutes to get from one end of the line to the other.

- CNA/wl