JOHOR BARU, Jan 11 — The government is positive that the Rapid Transit System (RTS) Link to connect Malaysia and Singapore will be fully operational on January 1, 2027, said Transport Minister Anthony Loke.
He said the RTS Link’s development is on schedule and both countries are committed to making the project a success.
“The RTS Link project’s marine viaduct construction has reached a 68 per cent completion rate.
“At the same time, the construction progress rate of the terrestrial viaduct is at 31 per cent, the station construction is at 41 per cent and the Customs, Immigration and Quarantine (CIQ) Complex is at 3.22 per cent.
“We are 100 per cent confident that the RTS Link project will progress smoothly and will be able to start operations on January 1, 2027,” said Loke at a press conference after the span completion ceremony connecting Malaysia and Singapore for the RTS Link project in Johor today.
The historic event was officiated by Prime Minister Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim and his Singapore counterpart, Lee Hsien Loong. Both leaders met at the project’s marine viaduct in a symbolic meeting.
Also present were Singapore’s acting transport minister Chee Hong Tat and Johor Menteri Besar Datuk Onn Hadiz Ghazi.
Loke also commended the RTS Link teams from Malaysia and Singapore for their dedication and hard work to ensure that the project is completed according to schedule.
He said the RTS Link’s fares will only be announced when the project is near its full completion date.
“The fare rate will be set by the responsible parties and will be made known before the RTS Link is operational,” he said.
Loke explained that the fare will be competitive and attractively priced to ensure that users from both countries can enjoy a comfortable cross-border journey.
“Most importantly, this RTS Link will shorten cross-border travel time, especially when immigration checks for both countries are carried out at a single location,” he said, adding that the single departure CIQ checks was the main component in the RTS Link project.
On a related matter, Loke said that the federal government is open to any proposal for improving the connectivity between Malaysia and Singapore, including through the implementation of ferry services.
“However, such proposals need to be agreed upon by both countries as such initiatives involves many components including infrastructure, facilities and CIQ issues,” he said.
Earlier, Malaysia and Singapore marked a milestone today after the RTS Link project connected both countries, making it the third land link.
It was the first time where Anwar and Lee met at the project’s 17.1m-long connecting span, which was completed in December last year.
During the event, both leaders also signed a commemorative plaque which is a strong commitment by both Malaysia and Singapore towards the completion of the RTS Link project.
The project, estimated to cost RM10 billion upon completion by end-2026, is a light commuter rail transport spanning four kilometres with two stations each at Bukit Chagar here and at Woodlands North in Singapore. It is expected to serve about 10,000 passengers per hour each way.
The RTS Link aims to ease the current traffic congestion on the Johor Causeway, which is among one of the busiest border crossings in the world.
It will connect to a viaduct 25 metres above the Tebrau Straits, bridging the Woodlands North station in Singapore to the Bukit Chagar station in Johor Baru.
The RTS Link project is expected to pull in 35 per cent of the 350,000 people who travel across the Johor Causeway daily.
The RTS Link has been hailed as an important project in improving bilateral ties between Malaysia and Singapore.
It is also expected to benefit the Johor-Singapore Special Economic Zone (JS-SEZ) initiative.