KUALA LUMPUR, Jan 16 — Seven local and international consortiums have submitted their Request for Information (RFI) proposals for the highly lucrative RM100 billion Kuala Lumpur-Singapore High-Speed Rail (HSR) project.
MyHSR Corporation Sdn Bhd (MyHSR) chairman Datuk Seri Fauzi Abdul Rahman said the proposals made the submissions deadline yesterday, Utusan Malaysia reported.
He said the seven consortiums were among a total of 37 companies that had purchased tender documents through the RFI process.
“At yesterday’s 12pm deadline, seven companies have put forward their proposals for consideration,” he was quoted as saying by the Malay daily yesterday.
Bidding for the Kuala Lumpur-Singapore HSR project opened in July last year.
Fauzi told Utusan Malaysia that a decision on which company will be awarded the deal can be expected in three months.
He said the bidders will be scrutinised based on three main conditions.
“These companies need to have sufficient funds to 100 per cent finance the project, they need to have experience in building HSR in other foreign countries and need expertise for the project,” he was quoted as saying.
Fauzi added that the next step involved the HSR board, which will conduct a study to determine which company is able to develop the project.
“For example, the technical team will go to assess the company’s expertise and experience. If they say they have done it in Indonesia, then our team will make sure there is evidence to back up the claims.
“Therefore, we hope that all the research will be completed in two to three months. Following that, we will send the proposals to the Cabinet and they will make a decision,” he was quoted as saying.
He said that because some of the companies were based overseas, it could take some time.
The Anwar administration announced last March that it is open to revive the KL-Singapore HSR project as long as it does not have to fund the 350km-long rail project.
MyHSR was then reported in July 2023 saying it would privately fund the project.
Last month, Johor Ruler Sultan Ibrahim Iskandar, who is also the incoming Yang di-Pertuan Agong, pushed for its revival and proposed the tracks be shifted to run through Forest City, a massive luxury development project in Johor that had targeted nationals from China before the 2020 Covid-19 pandemic that is now in decline.
Malaysia and Singapore first signed an agreement for the HSR project in 2016 that would see trains running at speeds more than 300km/h, enabling travel time between Kuala Lumpur and Singapore within 90 minutes.
The project was scheduled to be completed in 2026, and expected to provide three main services: direct travel between Malaysia and Singapore within 90 minutes; domestic service in Malaysia; and shuttle service from Iskandar Puteri in Johor to Singapore.
The project was then suspended by the first Pakatan Harapan government in September 2018 but revived just three months later with adjustments to costs.
Both Malaysia and Singapore then announced the termination of the KL-Singapore HSR project on January 1, 2021, as the two countries failed to reach an agreement on changes proposed by Malaysia before the project agreement expired on December 31, 2020.
Malaysia paid S$102.8 million (RM320.27 million) in compensation to Singapore for development costs incurred.