Seremban station impression

ASIA: The government of Malaysia has paid S$102·8m to reimburse the government of Singapore for costs it incurred in developing plans for a 350 km high speed railway between Singapore and Kuala Lumpur.

Malaysia decided last year not to go ahead with the project, explaining it was no longer seen as economically viable. As a result, the bilateral development agreement signed with Singapore in 2016 was allowed to lapse on December 31.

The two countries said in a joint statement on March 29 that they had ‘reached an amicable agreement on the amount following a verification process by the government of Malaysia. This amount represents a full and final settlement in relation to the termination of the bilateral agreement’ The two governments emphasised that ‘both countries remain committed to maintaining good relations and fostering close co-operation for the mutual benefit of the peoples of the two countries.’

Singapore had spent a total of S$270m on the HSR project, but it did not seek compensation for land acquisition costs as these can be recovered. Some of the land procured for the scheme is being used to accommodate the Integrated Train Testing Centre now under construction.