SINGAPORE: A bill to support the building and running of two future rail links between Singapore and Malaysia was introduced in Parliament, The Straits Times reported.
The report said the Cross-Border Railways Bill would provide for the licensing of operators to run train services and maintain railway assets; the appointment of independent safety auditors; and funding for the projects’ construction, among various clauses.
It will also empower the government to suspend cross-border train services if there are imminent risks to commuter safety, such as a malfunction or terrorist act, said the report.
The bill, which was put forth by Second Minister for Transport Ng Chee Meng, will be read for a second time at the next Parliament sitting, it said.
Quoting a Singapore Transport Ministry spokesman, the report said the Bill would support the “construction, operation and regulation” of the Kuala Lumpur-Singapore High-Speed Rail (HSR), in accordance with a bilateral agreement signed last December.
The 350km rail project is slated for completion in 2026. Of the entire rail system, 15km will lie in Singapore and 335km in Malaysia.
The bill will also support the Johor Bahru-Singapore Rapid Transit System (RTS) Link after Singapore and Malaysia ink a bilateral agreement at the end of this year, the spokesman added.
The RTS will begin passenger service by the end of December 2024 and will be able to carry up to 10,000 passengers in each direction every hour when up and running.