Government now want to be able to solicit the best offer from anywhere, partnering with local companies to provide the lowest cost possible to the government.
Government are open to and keen to adopt the public-private partnership private parties can come up with proposals that will require the least amount of assistance from the government.
It is very seldom a rail project can sustain itself financially. If KL-Singapore HSR project carry out by an operator to pay for the whole infrastructure it can never pay by itself.
This project will require some form of government assistance.
Benefits of travelling on HSR will mean better connectivity, shorter travel times and new development around train stations.
High speed rail systems can have substantial impacts on other transport modes, even freight transport systems.
One of the most apparent is on air transportation services between cities of the high speed rail corridor, particularly the most distant ones.
High speed as able to compete successfully with short to medium distance air transport services as it conveys the advantage of servicing downtown areas and has much lower terminal time, mainly because of less security constraints.
Rail stations with high speed rail services are also increasingly becoming transport hubs with the associated demands on urban transport systems, particularly public transit.
The rail network is also expected to spur tourism, give businesses a wider pool of workers to choose from and help grow technology clusters in cities.
For freight transportation, there are several potential impacts, mostly indirect. The most straightforward is that since high speed rail uses its own right of way, the separation between passenger and freight systems promotes the efficiency and reliability of both networks.
The main reason is that passengers and freight have different operational characteristics, namely in terms of speed and frequency of service.
The setting of high speed networks may also incite additional investments in rail freight infrastructure, particularly in metropolitan areas, better signalling technologies and cost sharing initiatives.
The proposed HSR is also expected to create positive impacts to the tourism industry of both nations.
With combined tourist arrival of about 35 million coupled with 90 minutes commuting time, Kuala Lumpur-Iskandar-Singapore will be able to position themselves as the transportation hub of South-East Asia as it will provide tourists a wider airline selection to choose from either in KLIA, LCCT or in Changi Airport hence, improving international access to the region.
In addition, the HSR in Shanghai and Tokyo are one of the “must see” tourists’ attractions in the respective countries.
The HSR would enable some companies to expand or relocate to Malaysia, particularly in the Iskandar region.
Moving manufacturing activities to Iskandar would allow the land to be used for even higher value activities.
The relocation of manufacturing activities to Iskandar via the availability of HSR is expected to raise the contribution of the manufacturing sector to the nation’s GDP.
KL-Singapore link is a critical and landmark connection that needed to be established through high-speed rail.
With the services sector earmarked as a growth engine for the next decade, high-speed rail connectivity could greatly help organisations to leverage on the Greater KL to establish larger offices with competent workforce that could commute most effectively between KL and Singapore.
Source : BERNAMA, The Star and The Edge
(this article written for 1BINA.my)