Malaysia’s mega deals un­der scru­tiny

The Straits Times - - TOPOF THE NEWS -

Malaysia’s Pakatan Hara­pan gov­ern­ment has re­viewed sev­eral large in­fra­struc­ture projects since it came into power in May, claim­ing that the pre­vi­ous Barisan Na­sional ad­min­is­tra­tion had sad­dled the coun­try with over RM1 tril­lion (S$332 bil­lion) in debt and that cor­rup­tion had in­flated the costs of some of th­ese deals.

Here is a look at the projects on hold or can­celled:

EAST COAST RAIL LINK

What: A 688km rail line from Tumpat, Ke­lan­tan to Port Klang, Se­lan­gor with op­er­a­tions slated to be­gin by 2024 Main con­trac­tor: China Com­mu­ni­ca­tions Con­struc­tion Com­pany Cost: RM81 bil­lion Sta­tus: Sus­pended in­def­i­nitely.

TWO PIPE­LINES

What: The Trans-Sabah Gas Pipe­line – a 662km pipe­line in Sabah, run­ning from Ki­ma­nis Gas Ter­mi­nal to San­dakan and Tawau; and the Multi-Prod­uct Pipe­line – a 600km petroleum pipe­line con­nect­ing Me­laka and Port Dickson, Negeri Sem­bi­lan to Ji­tra, Kedah Main con­trac­tor: China Petroleum Pipe­line Engi­neer­ing Cost: RM9.4 bil­lion Sta­tus: Can­celled. Af­ter dis­cov­er­ing that 88 per cent of the con­tract value was paid when only 13 per cent of the work was com­pleted, the gov­ern­ment ini­tially sus­pended the project be­fore can­celling it this month. The project is 85 per cent fi­nanced by China’s Exim Bank.

SIN­GA­PORE-KUALA LUMPUR HIGH SPEED RAIL (HSR)

What: The 350km HSR line, agreed be­tween the gov­ern­ments of Sin­ga­pore and Malaysia in 2016, would have cut travel times be­tween Kuala Lumpur and Sin­ga­pore to only 90 min­utes com­pared with four hours by car Main con­trac­tor: Not ap­pointed yet Cost: RM110 bil­lion Sta­tus: De­ferred by two years to May 31, 2020. Orig­i­nally slated to be com­pleted by end-2026.

Ha­zlin Has­san and Trinna Leong

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