ASIA: Following their annual retreat, on December 13 Prime Minister of Malaysia Mohd Najib Tun Abdul Razak and his Singaporean counterpart Lee Hsien Loong welcomed the progress which the bilateral Transportation Links Work Group has made with the developing proposals for the Johor Bahru-Singapore Rapid Transit System Link between their countries.

The RTS Link would connect Bukit Chagar and Johor Bahru in Malaysia with Woodlands North in Singapore, where passengers would transfer to Singapore’s future Thomson-East Coast metro line. The RTS Link is intended to improve regional connectivity and reduce congestion at the border crossings.

The prime ministers affirmed their support for the decision that the RTS Link would use similar technology to Singapore’s Thomson-East Coast Line to provide economies of scale, and would be operated by ‘a corporate entity’. Fares will be market-based and set by the operator, and will not be regulated by the governments.

The Prime Minsters expect that a bilateral agreement on the RTS Link would be signed by the end of 2017.