S’pore-Johor rapid transit link by 2018

The Singapore and Malaysian governments plan to open a rapid transit link between the city-state and the neighbouring city of Johor Bahru in Malaysia’s south by 2018, both governments said in a joint statement on Monday.

“The terminating stations of the (rapid transit system) link will be in the vicinity of JB Sentral, Johor Bahru and in the vicinity of Republic Polytechnic, Singapore,” the statement said.

“It is targeted that the RTS link will be operational by 2018. The RTS link will have a co-located (customs, immigration and quarantine) facility in Singapore and another co-located CIQ facility in Johor Bahru so that commuters need to clear immigration only once for each way of travel.”

The announcement comes as Malaysia and Singapore officially sealed the Points of Agreement (POA) on Malayan railway land in Singapore.

The signing ceremony took place in Putrajaya, Malaysia on Monday.

Foreign Minister K Shanmugam signed on behalf of Singapore while Malaysia’s side was represented by the Minister in the Prime Minister’s Department, Nor Mohamed Yakcop.

The signing officially marks an end to year-long negotiations on implementation details that kickstarted following the landmark announcement of the POA breakthrough by the prime ministers of both countries in May 2010.

The joint statement by the prime ministers of Singapore and Malaysia said that preparations for the relocation of Keretapi Tanah Melayu (KTM) from Tanjong Pagar to the Woodlands Train Checkpoint on July 1 are on track.

A joint venture company, called M+S Pte Ltd, and Iskandar JV Company will be established by Thursday.

M+S will develop the four land parcels in Marina South as an integrated development and the two land parcels in Ophir-Rochor, also as an integrated development.

Iskandar JV will undertake two wellness developments in Iskandar Malaysia.

In addition, Khazanah and Temasek will jointly consider other potential developments which are commercially viable in Iskandar Malaysia of up to 500 acres of land, inclusive of the said 215 acres.

Also on schedule is the implementation of the work plan to hand over the waterworks under the 1961 Water Agreement by Singapore free of charge and as a matter of goodwill after the expiry of the agreement on 31 August 2011.

Malaysian Prime Minister Najib Razak and Singapore Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong expressed appreciation and satisfaction on the work done by the ministers and officials in achieving the historic breakthrough in the POA.

Both prime ministers also reiterated their commitments towards further strengthening bilateral relations.

They noted that the resolution of the POA would pave the way for the two countries to explore new areas of cooperation.

Source : Channel NewsAsia – 27 Jun 2011

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