ECRL’s Mentakab-Port Klang route being fine-tuned, says ministry

Construction of the East Coast Rail Link project in Bentong, Pahang in July 2018. The Mentakab-Port Klang alignment is being reviewed for cost-saving and better integration with the rest of the peninsula's railway network. – The Malaysian Insight file pic, September 8, 2020.

THE East Coast Rail Link’s (ECRL) Mentakab to Port Klang alignment is being reviewed and fine-tuned, especially for the original route passing through Bentong, Gombak and heading towards Port Klang, said the Ministry of Transport.

Deputy Transport Minister Hasbi Habibollah said the ECRL project is divided into three sections, namely Section A (Kota Bharu–Dungun), Section B (Dungun–Mentakab) and Section C (Mentakab–Port Klang).

“The original proposal for the ECRL project in 2018, which was before the suspension of the project, had taken into account the construction of the metre-gauge rail system for Keretapi Tanah Melayu Bhd (KTMB) and standard gauge for ECRL, which would be constructed from Serendah to Port Klang.

“Serendah Station has been identified as a suitable station for passenger interchange and also for goods or cargo between ECRL and KTMB. This station can integrate both ECRL and KTMB services as well as enhance the rail alignment between states in the east coast and the north of Peninsular Malaysia,” he said at the Dewan Negara sitting today.

Responding to a question from Senator Datuk Ismail Ibrahim (BN-UMNO) on the government’s plans for the realignment of the original ECRL route passing through Bentong, Gombak and heading to Port Klang, he expressed hope it can align with the integrated railway network in Peninsular Malaysia, especially the east coast.

“A suggestion for the construction of the ECRL and KTMB route from Serendah to Port Klang has the potential to benefit the government, especially in savings in project expenses as well as saving time in the adjustment and construction of these two routes,” he said. He said the government would also renegotiate with the Chinese government and the main contractor for the project to get certainty on the cost implications and project implementation schedule.

“The results of the negotiations would be presented to the government for the final decision on the Section C (Mentakab–Port Klang) alignment of the ECRL project,” he said. – Bernama, September 8, 2020.

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